Maine mass shootings: At least 16 killed as police hunt for gunman

Maine mass shootings
Law enforcement officials released a photo of a man with a
semiautomatic rifle they were calling a person of interest
in a mass shooting in Lewiston, Maine, on Oct. 25, 2023.

Maine mass shootings: According to State Police, mass shootings in Lewiston, Maine, on Wednesday night claimed the lives of at least 16 people. Numerous reports said that scores had been hurt, although it was not apparent how many had been shot.

According to State Police, there was a person of interest at large.

At a press conference, Maine Public Safety Commissioner Mike Sauschuck stated that the gunshots started just before seven o’clock in the evening. Shortly after 8 p.m., State Police announced that they were looking into “multiple locations.”

As a person of interest in the shootings, 40-year-old Robert R. Card is being sought by the authorities, the Lewiston Police Department announced late on Wednesday night on Facebook. He is regarded as dangerous and armed.

Card is a certified firearms instructor who is thought to be stationed out of Saco, Maine in the Army reserve, according to a Maine law enforcement advisory that CBS News was able to view.

The alert states that he recently disclosed mental health concerns, including hearing voices. The warning stated that he had also threatened to blow up the National Guard base in Saco, Maine and that he had spent two weeks this summer being admitted to a mental health facility.

Officials released pictures of the wanted person and requested that people get in touch with them “if you recognize this individual.”

Card has ties to Massachusetts, sources told CBS News Boston, and federal officials and Massachusetts State Police are stationed near the Maine border.

State Police reported that they had located a “vehicle of interest” in Lisbon, Maine, which is about seven miles southeast of Lewiston.

Additionally, authorities released a picture of a white car and requested that anyone who recognized it get in touch with Lewiston police. Although it matched the description of a car Card was known to have been driving from the law enforcement alert, it was not immediately obvious if this was the same vehicle that had been found in Lisbon.

Maine mass shootings
The photo of this vehicle, which is wanted in relation
to an active shooting scenario, was made public by
Lewiston, Maine police on Oct. 25, 2023. 

Residents of Lewiston and Lisbon were advised to stay indoors by the State Police. On social media, they posted, “Please stay inside your home with the doors locked.”

Later, the shelter-in-place order was extended by the authorities to Card’s hometown of Bowdoin, Maine. “Please stay inside your homes while more than 100 investigators, both local and federal work to locate Robert Card,” they said.

Auburn, Maine, which borders Lewiston on the west, also issued a shelter-in-place advisory to its citizens. North of Portland, Lewiston is roughly 45 minutes away.

Due to the manhunt, many schools in the area are closed on Thursday, according to WGME-TV, a CBS Portland station. One of the locations where schools will be closed is Portland.

Sparetime Recreation and other locations Lewiston police reported they were called.

In a Facebook post, Schemengees’ owner wrote, “My heart is crushed.” I don’t know what to say. Your entire world abruptly turns upside down for no apparent reason. In this community, great people pass away. How are we supposed to make sense of this? I’m praying for everyone right now.”

At the bowling alley, a man stated he heard roughly ten shots, mistaking the first for the popping of a balloon. I was facing the door with my back to it. guy told The Associated Press, “And as soon as I turned and saw it was not a balloon — he was holding a weapon — I just booked it. He then hurried down the alley and into the machinery behind the pins.

In a statement, the Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston stated that it was responding to a mass casualty, mass shooter incident, but it did not provide any additional information regarding the number of patients or the seriousness of their wounds.

In relation to the shootings, the Central Maine Medical Center was sending “one patient transport” to the Maine Medical Center in Portland. “Alerted on-call staff and created critical care and operating room capacity in anticipation of potential patient transports,” the Portland hospital stated.

Since 2012, Maine has had 16 to 29 homicides annually, according to the Reuters news agency, which cited State Police.

CBS News was informed by a White House official that President Biden had received a briefing on “what’s known so far about the mass shooting in Lewiston.”

Mr. Biden “stepped out” of a state banquet honoring Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, a White House official told CBS News, “to make calls.” He personally discussed the shooting in Lewiston over the phone with Senators Angus King and Susan Collins, Representative Jared Golden, and Maine Governor Janet Mills. Following this horrifying attack, the president pledged full federal support.”

An FBI official informed CBS News that the agency is also responding.

Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas has also been briefed.

“The entire Department of Homeland Security grieves with the loved ones of those killed and injured, and stands with the brave law enforcement officers and first responders who are currently working to secure and safeguard the people of Lewiston,” Mayorkas said in a statement.

Mills published a statement indicating she was briefed on the matter. “I urge all people in the area to follow the direction of State and local enforcement,” Mills stated. “I will continue to monitor the situation and remain in close contact with public safety officials.”

King’s office said in a statement saying he was “deeply sad for the city of Lewiston and all those worried about their family, friends, and neighbors.”

Collins remarked on social media that she had also spoken with Mr. Biden. “As our state mourns this horrific mass shooting, we appreciate the support we’ve received from across the country, including the call I received from President Biden offering assistance,” she wrote.

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