CHESAPEAKE, Va. (WAVY) — Chesapeake police say the suspect behind a mass shooting at a Walmart just off Battlefield Blvd. is dead.
It’s still unclear just how many people were killed or injured in the shooting, but police say there were multiple of both found inside the building, where the shooting occurred. One person was deceased outside the front entrance.
Chesapeake PD spokesperson Leo Kosinski did not have many updates in a briefing around 12:40 a.m. but said previously police believe “less than 10” people had died. He says the injured were rushed to multiple area hospitals.
A spokesperson for Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, the area’s top trauma center, confirmed five patients were being treated there.
Police are still going through the building and people are asked to steer clear. The call reporting the shooting came in at 10:12 p.m. Tuesday. The Walmart supercenter was open to the public at the time.
Police have not been able to confirm reports about who the gunman was, but police emphasized that person was dead.
There’s still a massive police response outside of the store, with more than 40 emergency vehicles outside. FBI agents and Virginia Beach police have responded to assist Chesapeake. The ATF in Washington tweeted just after midnight that they were also on the way to help in the investigation.
WAVY’s crew is being kept away from getting near the store at the moment. Police are also urging the public to stay away. If you’re looking for information or for a loved one who works or was at the store, go to the Chesapeake Conference Center.
Employees also gathered at the nearby Sam’s Club, where attendance was being taken. A night shift employee who spoke with WAVY’s Brett Hall said “thank goodness I showed up late.”
The mother of an employee said she heard the shots when she was on the phone with her son. He was physically OK after the shooting.
Current and former employees who spoke with WAVY said the store felt like home.
Walmart shared a statement on Wednesday morning, saying: “We are shocked at this tragic event at our Chesapeake, Virginia store. 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.”
Virginia state Sen. Louise Lucas, who represents that portion of Chesapeake, shared a statement on Tuesday night, saying “I am absolutely heartbroken that America’s latest mass shooting took place in a Walmart in my district in Chesapeake, Virginia tonight. I will not rest until we find the solutions to end this gun violence epidemic in our country that has taken so many lives.”
Multiple other Virginia elected officials shared tweets and other statements early Wednesday morning:
This is a breaking article and will be updated.