Friday, March 22, 2013

3 Marines dead, including suspect, in Quantico shooting

Horrific news this morning as three Marines are dead at the Quantico base in Virginia - it appears that a Marine killed two fellow Marines last night then turned the gun on himself.

Prayers go out to the families of the fallen.

The story comes from CBS News.

3 Marines dead, including suspect, in Quantico shooting

QUANTICO, Va. A Marine killed a male and female colleague in a shooting at a base in northern Virginia before killing himself, officials said.

Marine Col. David Maxwell, commander of Marine Base Quantico, told reporters during a Friday morning press conference that the dead Marines' identities would be withheld for the next 24 hours or until their next of kin was notified.

Maxwell said all three Marines were permanent personnel assigned to the Marine Corps' Officer Candidates School.

Authorities are still investigating and aren't speculating what possible motives might be.

Maxwell said authorities received a 911 call around 10:30 p.m. Thursday night. Maxwell also disputed earlier reports that the shooting led to a standoff between authorities and the suspect, who was barricaded in barracks at the base.

"There was not a standoff or barricades," Maxwell told reporters.

Authorities entered the barracks early Friday and found the suspect dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound along with a second victim. Base spokesman Lt. Agustin Solivan could not say what prompted authorities to enter the barracks, which are at the base's officer candidate school.

No names were immediately released but Solivan said the suspect and both victims were Marines. Authorities believe the suspect was a staff member at the officer candidate school, Solivan said.

Solivan said the shooting was isolated to the school and authorities were confident there were no other casualties. The base was put on lockdown after the shooting but the lockdown was lifted early Friday. During the lockdown, residents were warned over a loudspeaker to stay inside.

The base, which is about 37 miles south of Washington, is also home to the FBI's training academy.

In 2010, the base was one of several targets of an ex-Marine reservist who, during five nighttime shootings, fired on military targets including the Pentagon. Yonathan Melaku, on two separate occasions, fired at the National Museum of the Marine Corps in Quantico. No one was injured and Melaku was ultimately sentenced to 25 years in prison.

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