Police in Richland, Washington have responded to a shooting at a Fred Meyer grocery store.
Initial reports were that at least one person was wounded inside the store by a man with a handgun, but it is now understood that one person is dead and at least one other is wounded. Eyewitnesses claim to have heard as many as a dozen shots.
Employees and customers hid and sheltered in place in stock rooms, restrooms, the pharmacy and offices until police could reach them to escort them to safety.
Local police have released images of the suspect taken from security cameras and are seeking information on their identity and location. The suspect should be considered armed and dangerous and people have been advised to avoid the area due to police activity.
The first call to police came at 11.03am local time reporting yelling and possible gun shots within the store. Officers were dispatched and arrived on scene at 11.04am.
Further police statement due at 2.15pm
Oliver O’Connell7 February 2022 22:07
Oliver O’Connell7 February 2022 22:02
Official statement from Richland Police
The safety of our citizens remains of utmost concern.
The Richland Police Department is actively looking for the suspect.
The suspect left the store and it is undetermined if he left on foot or in a vehicle.
One person has died and another is in the hospital with injuries. The suspect has been described as a middle aged white male. Photos have been distributed. He is believed to be armed and dangerous.
We ask our community or anyone with information to contact Non Emergency dispatch at 509-628-0333. If you see the suspect or feel you are in danger, please call 911.
At approximately 11:03 dispatch received a call regarding an incident at the Richland Fred Meyer. Initial reports were of yelling and possible gun shots within the store. Officers were dispatched and the first officers arrived on scene at 11:04 am
Again, the suspect is still at large. Please avoid the area.
Oliver O’Connell7 February 2022 21:58
Sightings of suspect reported to police
Once photos of the suspect had been posted to social media by police, emergency dispatchers started getting reports of possible sightings of the man.
He was reportedly seen at another grocery store in Richland, and at an apartment complex.
Oliver O’Connell7 February 2022 21:52
Police say that a truck pictured in surveillance footage is not involved in the incident.
Oliver O’Connell7 February 2022 21:45
A number of nearby schools went into lockdown when news of the shooting broke.
Richland High School, Carmichael Middle, River’s Edge High, Marcus Whitman Elementary, Lewis and Clark Elementary and Christ the King School were all alerted about the incident.
Oliver O’Connell7 February 2022 21:30
Officers search aisle by aisle
The Tri-City Herald reports that officers went aisle by aisle inside the store looking for employees and customers and any possible evidence.
People reportedly hid and sheltered in place in stock rooms, restrooms, the pharmacy, and offices until police could reach them to escort them out safely.
Employees and customers were directed to wait in the parking lot, where several could be seen hugging and crying.
One witness said they heard at least 10 shots fired inside the store.
Police, sheriff’s deputies, troopers and federal agents from across southeastern Washington and Umatilla County were called in to help. A Chaplain also responded to the scene.
Oliver O’Connell7 February 2022 21:20
‘I will never forget today. Ever.’
Eyewitness Jacquelyn Pronk posted on Facebook: “I was there. I was in sliced bread and each pop shook the rack and I felt it in my chest. I ran with 2 elderly folks who couldn’t hear the shots. It was like a scary dream, my legs were putty and I couldn’t run fast enough. I called 911 from behind a car, crouching on the ground. I will never forget today. Ever.”
Oliver O’Connell7 February 2022 21:11
Oliver O’Connell7 February 2022 21:05
What we know so far about the incident.
Oliver O’Connell7 February 2022 20:52