Raleigh, NC shooting: City releases preliminary report on mass shooting that left 5 dead




CNN

The 15-year-old boy who allegedly killed five people and wounded two in Raleigh, North Carolina last week was found with a shotgun, a handgun and a knife, according to a city report released Thursday.

Authorities still do not know the motive of the suspected gunman, who was found shot by police and is hospitalized in critical condition, according to a preliminary report from the city manager to the police chief.

The report did not name the suspect, but his parents identified him as Austin Thompson.

The suspect has not been charged. However, Wake County Prosecutor Lorrin Freeman said her office plans to charge the 15-year-old as an adult.

A timeline of the report says authorities believe a 16-year-old boy, who was shot once and stabbed multiple times, died first. The suspect’s brother, James Roger Thompson, has been identified as the 16-year-old who was killed.

A timeline of the report based on the route authorities believe the suspect took was the gunman who wounded Marcille Gardner, 59, who was found in her driveway in Hedingham, East Raleigh subdivision. The suspect then fatally wounded Nicole Connors and killed her dog on the porch, and shot and killed Raleigh police officer Gabriel Torres, 29, on his way to work in his personal car, according to the report. .

The suspect ran onto a nearby greenway where he killed Mary Marshall, 35, who was walking her dog, and Susan Karnatz, 49, who was out jogging, according to the report.

“Based on current information, there does not appear to be any connection between the victims who were shot by the suspect prior to his encounter with police, as they lived in the same neighborhood,” the report added.

About 90 minutes after the first 911 calls were made, police found the suspect in an area with two buildings on the property, the report said. The latest shooting victim was an officer who was shot when the suspect fired from one of the buildings.

Police returned fire and rescued the officer, the report said, after Raleigh officers fired 23 shots.

Officers then set up a perimeter “due to concerns about the nature of his weapons, including multiple firearms, as well as possible hand grenades, as reported in a 911 call.”

When police arrived about three hours later, they found the suspect with a shotgun and shells nearby, according to the report. He had a gun in his waistband and an empty knife sheath attached to his belt. A knife was recovered from the front of the building, the report added.

The suspect was shot once, the report said.

According to the report, the two Raleigh Police officers who fired their weapons are administrative officers.

The report, which city officials typically file five days after a shooting involving law enforcement, says police will request “agency recordings” of the two officers who used their weapons and the officer injured in the pursuit. In North Carolina, a judge must rule on the release of body camera videos.

The suspect’s parents released a statement through their lawyers on Wednesday saying they are devastated by the loss of innocent lives, including the death of their son James.

“Our son Austin caused immeasurable pain to the Raleigh community, and we are overwhelmed with grief for the innocent lives lost,” Alan and Elise Thompson said in a statement obtained by CNN affiliate WTVD. “Words cannot begin to describe our anguish and sorrow.”

The suspect’s parents say they don’t understand why the mass tragedy happened.

“We have so many unanswered questions,” the Thompsons said in their statement. “There was never any indication or warning sign that Austin was capable of anything like this.”

Mourners gather at Beacon Baptist Church for a vigil after five people were shot in Raleigh.

The parents said they will continue to cooperate with law enforcement “and do everything we can to help them understand why and how this happened.”

According to the nonprofit Gun Violence Archive, there have been at least 546 shootings in the United States this year as of Tuesday. That’s an average of more than 1.8 mass shootings every day.

Both the Gun Violence Archive and CNN define a mass shooting as one in which at least four people are shot, excluding the shooter.