(CNN) — A 23-year-old man shot and killed four employees — three fatally — at a manufacturing facility in western Maryland on Thursday before fleeing the scene and exchanging gunfire with state police, authorities said.
According to Lt. Col. Bill Dofflemyer of the Maryland State Police, one Soldier and the suspect were wounded and hospitalized.
Investigators have yet to determine a motive for the shooting, which occurred around 2:30 p.m. ET, Washington County Sheriff Douglas W. Mullendore told reporters at a briefing.
According to a press release from MSP, the Washington County State Attorney’s Office is working to determine the charges against the suspect, who is not currently named.
The deadly incident is the 254th mass shooting this year, like the Land is on track to match or surpass last year overall, after the Archives of Gun Violence. It comes as the US House of Representatives has passed several Gun Reform Bills. These measures have little chance of getting through the Senate.
The victims and suspects were Columbia Machine employees, Mullendore said. The company manufactures equipment for concrete products, according to its website.
The wounded state police officer, who is a 25-year agency veteran, was treated for his injuries and released, according to an update from MSP. The suspect was also wounded after at least one of the police officers responding to the scene returned fire and hit him. He was still being treated Thursday night, police said.
Police from the nearby town of Smithsburg were the first to arrive at the plant and discovered a victim in a field near the company, Mullendore said. A press release from the sheriff’s office said there were a total of four victims at the facility, three of whom were dead.
State police obtained a description of the suspect and his vehicle, and three officers found him driving about 5 miles from the shooting.
“As the officers attempted to stop the vehicle, the suspect immediately began firing several (bullets) at the officers,” Dofflemyer said. A handgun was secured at the second shooting location, authorities said.
The sheriff identified the victims killed as Mark Alan Frey, 50; Charles Edward Minnick Jr., 31; and Joshua Robert Wallace, 30. The other victim was Brandon Chase Michael, 42; Police previously said he suffered life-threatening injuries.
Smithsburg is about 75 miles west of Baltimore. It’s about 100 miles from the West Virginia border, where the suspect lives, according to the sheriff.
According to the MSP, the Washington County Sheriff’s Office is leading the homicide investigation with help from the FBI and the Baltimore Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
All soldiers involved in the shooting “will be transferred to administrative duty” pending investigations as per the agency’s protocol, MSP said.
Columbia Machine CEO Rick Good said Friday the company is “deeply saddened” and is cooperating with authorities as the investigation continues.
“Our top priority during this tragic event is the safety and well-being of our employees and their families,” he said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with those who lost family members or were affected by this tragic event.”
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https://whdh.com/news/3-people-were-killed-in-workplace-shooting-at-maryland-plant-the-suspect-and-a-trooper-were-wounded-in-an-ensuing-shootout/ 3 people were killed in a workplace shootout at a Maryland plant. The suspect and a soldier were injured in a subsequent shootout – Boston News, Weather, Sports