A suspect is still on the run after two active shooter events in Lewiston, Maine, on Wednesday night that left at least 16 people dead and several others injured. The shootings occurred at three different locations: a bowling alley, a bar and grill, and a Walmart distribution center.
The Androscoggin County Sheriff’s Office and the Maine State Police urged residents to stay indoors and lock their doors while they investigated the shootings. The motive and identity of the shooter are unknown, but authorities said they do not believe it was terrorism-related.
“This is a horrific tragedy and we are doing everything we can to bring this individual to justice. We urge the public to remain vigilant and report any suspicious activity to 911,” Androscoggin County Sheriff Eric Samson said at a press conference.
The first shooting was reported at around 8 p.m. at the Bowl-O-Rama, a popular bowling alley in Lewiston. Witnesses said they heard gunshots and then people screaming. They ran out of the back door and saw people lying on the ground.
“I heard gunshots and then people screaming. I ran out of the back door and saw people lying on the ground. It was terrifying. I don’t know why anyone would do this,” a witness who was at the bowling alley told reporters.
The second shooting happened shortly after at the nearby Bar & Grill, where patrons were enjoying a karaoke night. The shooter entered the establishment and opened fire, killing several people and wounding others.
The third shooting took place at around 9 p.m. at the Walmart distribution center, where employees were working the night shift. The shooter entered the facility and shot randomly at workers, killing some and injuring others. He then fled the scene in a stolen car.
“We are deeply saddened by the loss of our associates and extend our deepest condolences to their families, friends and co-workers. We are cooperating fully with law enforcement and providing support to our associates,” a statement from Walmart said.
The governor of Maine, Janet Mills, declared a state of emergency and activated the National Guard to assist with the manhunt. She also expressed her grief and solidarity with the victims and their families.
“We are heartbroken by the senseless violence that has taken so many innocent lives in our state. We are working closely with local and federal authorities to ensure the safety of our citizens and bring the perpetrator to justice,” she said in a statement.
The Maine State Police said they are working tirelessly to apprehend the suspect and prevent further harm. They asked for the public’s patience and cooperation as they conduct their investigation.
“This is an unprecedented act of violence in our state. We are working tirelessly to apprehend the suspect and prevent further harm. We ask for your patience and cooperation as we conduct this investigation,” Maine State Police Colonel John Cote said.
– Suspect at large after 2 active shooter incidents in area of Lewiston, Maine, sheriff says. CNN, October 25, 2023.
– Maine mass shooting live updates: At least 16 dead, suspect at large. ABC News, October 25, 2023.
– Police say there’s an active shooter in Lewiston, Maine, and they are investigating multiple scenes. POLITICO, October 25, 2023.
– Shootings in Lewiston, Maine: At least 22 dead; suspect at large. CNBC, October 26, 2023.