Doha Madani 3 min read
One person was killed and at least 13 other people were injured in a shooting at a Kroger grocery store Thursday afternoon in a suburb of Memphis, Tennessee.
Officers responded to reports of an active shooter at the supermarket in Collierville, a suburb about 30 miles east of downtown Memphis, just after 1:30 p.m. local time, Collierville Police Chief Dale Lane said.
The suspect, who was not identified, is dead from what authorities said they believe is a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Lane said investigators are planning to execute search warrants at undisclosed locations as part of the investigation.
“The suspected shooter’s vehicle is in the parking lot, and we are waiting on some additional equipment to get here to be able to safely check that vehicle, as well as some property that was on him,” Lane said.
At least 12 people were taken to hospitals, and one person walked into a hospital for treatment, Lane said.
Regional One Health Medical Center, a Level 1 trauma center in Memphis, reported that it had taken in nine of the injured and that four were in critical condition. Two people were being treated at Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare; their conditions were not clear.
At least one person was killed.
Kroger referred questions to Collierville police in a statement Thursday.
“The entire Kroger family offers our thoughts, prayers and support to the individuals and families of the victims during this difficult time,” the grocery chain said. “We are cooperating with local law enforcement, who have secured the store and parking lot. The store will remain closed while the police investigation continues, and we have initiated counseling services for our associates.”
Authorities said they were working with witnesses to understand what unfolded before the shooting and did not have any information about a motive.
“There were numerous employees that were working,” Lane said. “We found people hiding in freezers and in locked offices.
They were doing what they had been trained to do: run, hide, fight. And so, you know, I hate that we had to do it here.”
Brignetta Dickerson, a Kroger employee, told NBC affiliate WMC of Memphis that she first thought the gunshots were balloons popping, until they continued and she ran. She, along with some customers and co-workers, headed toward the employee break room and kept running to the receiving area.
“There’s another opening where you can go in and hide, through an incinerator. … He comes right behind us, starts shooting,” Dickerson said. “And he kept on shooting, shooting, shooting. He shot one of my co-workers in the head and shot one of the customers in the stomach.”
Lane addressed a photo of a man on the store’s roof that had been circulating on social media, saying that he could not officially deny that the person was the shooter yet but that an employee had to be extricated off the roof.
“I was part of a team that extricated an employee of Kroger from the top of the building,” Lane said. “So it’s more than likely going to be a Kroger employee that was working on the roof.”