7 dead, including shooter, after Walmart employee opens fire in Chesapeake store, police say
Seven people are dead and another four injured after a Walmart employee opened fire in the Sam's Circle store location in Chesapeake late Tuesday, police said.
Police confirmed the male shooter is among the dead, found with an apparently self-inflicted gunshot wound.
At a press conference early Wednesday, officials said they believe the shooter acted alone and used a single pistol. Police first learned of shots fired in the store around 10:12 p.m. and arrived there a few minutes later.
Police said they have not identified the shooter because his next of kin has not been notified. But multiple news outlets have reported that the shooter’s name is Andre Bing.
On Wednesday morning, police were guarding a Chesapeake home listed under Bing’s name. The door to the house had been forced in and a glass storm door shattered.
Five patients were taken to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital overnight, the health system confirmed, two of whom died. Two are in critical condition as of early Wednesday. One patient is in good condition.
Leaders across the region, state and country have commented on the tragedy.
At the press conference, Chesapeake Police Chief Mark Solesky called the incident "senseless violence" and said city officials are praying for anyone affected.
"Your Chesapeake community is here for you and will continue to be here for you during the difficult days, months and years ahead," Solesky said.
Chesapeake Mayor Rick West also thanked first responders who rushed to the scene.
"I am devastated by the senseless act of violence that took place late last night in our City," West said in a statement. "Chesapeake is a tightknit community and we are all shaken by this news."
Gov. Glenn Youngkin said in a tweet that he's in contact with local law enforcement and is making available any resources they need.
He also ordered that flags throughout Virginia be flown at half-staff through this weekend "in respect and memory" of the Chesapeake victims.
"Heinous acts of violence have no place in our communities," he said.
Officials with various law enforcement agencies are assisting local police, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Virginia State Police, Virginia Beach Police Department and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
The FBI's Norfolk office has set up a tip hotline to learn more about the shooting. Anyone with information can call 1-800-CALL-FBI.
President Joe Biden released a statement Wednesday morning about the Chesapeake shooting.
"Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, one of our most cherished holidays that brings us together as Americans and as families, when we hug our loved ones and count our blessings. But because of yet another horrific and senseless act of violence, there are now even more tables across the country that will have empty seats this Thanksgiving," Biden wrote. "There are now more families who know the worst kind of loss and pain imaginable."
Walmart also put out a statement on Twitter.
"We are shocked at this tragic event at our Chesapeake, Virginia store," the company said. "We’re praying for those impacted, the community and our associates. We’re working closely with law enforcement, and we are focused on supporting our associates."
Officials have set up a family reunification area at the Chesapeake Conference Center. Anyone looking to check on employees or people who may have been in the store should go there at 700 Conference Center Drive.