A shooting rampage in small-town Nova Scotia, Canada was reported this weekend. The gunman killed 12 people, according to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. RCMP confirmed to CNN that 13 people had died in the mass shooting, but could not confirm if the death toll included the suspected gunman.
According to RCMP National Headquarters spokeswoman Catherine Fortin, their important investigational work is continuing and out of respect for the families of the victims, they can't provide any additional information yet. At a media conference, the police described chaos with multiple 911 calls coming in late on April 18 at a property in Portapique, Nova Scotia.
The RCMP Chief Superintended Chris Leather told reporters that when police arrived at the scene, the members located several casualties inside and outside of the home. The police said that they are not certain how many people died or were injured in the incident.
One officer died on the shooting, and she was identified as Constable Heidi Stevenson, a mother of two and 23-year-old veteran of the RCMP. Another officer is in the hospital receiving treatment for non-life threatening injuries he suffered in the incident, the RCMP stated.
Leather also said that the search for the gunman lasted for 24 hours and it led them to several crime scenes that were miles apart. Eventually, the suspect was caught at a truck stop on April 19. Leather stated that the search for the suspect ended this morning when the suspect was located and he can confirm that he is now dead.
According to Nova Scotia RCMP, the suspected gunman was Gabriel Wortman, 51. He eluded police for hours before he was killed at the truck stop when he tried to shoot at the officers in the area.
The manhunt was complicated because the suspect is said to have been wearing an RCMP uniform. He was also driving a car that was made to look like a police car. Leather said that the fact that the gunman had an RCMP uniform and a car that was made to look like a police car means that it was not a random act.
However, Leather said that it was too early in the investigation to tell what the gunman's motivation was. A law enforcement told CNN that the authorities were searching at numerous crime scenes, beginning in Portapique and reaching to Enfield, where the suspect was eventually caught.
The premier of Nova Scotia, Stephen McNeil, called the shooting spree one of the most senseless acts of violence in the province's history. At a media conference on coronavirus, he told reporters that he never imagined that he would wake up to the horrific news that an active shooter was on the loose in Nova Scotia.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau tweeted "Our hearts go out to everyone affected by the shooting," adding "we're keeping all of you in our thoughts."
National Police Union President Brian Sauvé said that the members' hearts are heavy with grief and sadness of the incident after the lost one of their own. He then praised the officers who helped end the attack.
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