Virginia shooter commits suicide

Shooter who killed two journalists during on-air TV broadcast kills himself

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

The car of suspected gunman Vester L. Flanagan, also known as Bryce Williams, is seen off Highway I-66 in Fauquier County, Virginia August 26, 2015.

Man who shot dead two journalists working for WDBJ7 TV channel while conducting a live television interview in Virginia on Wednesday, shot himself several times just hours after the incident, according to state police.

The suspect that police identified as Vester Lee Flanagan, also known as Bryce Williams, shot himself several times on Interstate 66, Faquier County in Virginia and died after he was taken to the hospital, Franklin County Sheriff Bill Overton said.

Flanagan, who declared by CBS affiliate WDBJ7 TV as a former employee of the channel, opened fire to WDBJ7 photographer Adam Ward and WDBJ7 reporter Alison Parker in on-air broadcast at Bridgewater Plaza, which is on Smith Mountain Lake.

The 27-year-old cameraman, Adam Ward, who had started working after Flanagan and 24-year-old reporter Alison Parker, both died at the scene.

The woman, Vicki Gardner, executive director of the Smith Mountain Lake Regional Chamber of Commerce who was being interviewed by Parker was wounded in the shooting.

The suspect recorded his shooting by personal camera and after killing the man identifying himself as Bryce Williams put the video on Facebook and Twitter.

The videos were immediately removed from Twitter and Facebook, also Bryce Williams' Twitter account was suspended.

On the shared video the gun has been shown clearly approaching to the interview scene.

After the incident Flanagan was driving a rental car after he left his own car at the Roanoke-Blacksburg Regional Airport, TV reports.

On a highway in Virginia, Flanagan refused the police stop when spotted by a trooper and sped away.

"Minutes later, the suspect's vehicle ran off the road and crashed. The troopers approached the vehicle and found the male driver suffering from a gunshot wound," police said in the statement.

WDBJ7 President and General Manager Jeff Marks told CNN "Every now and then you get a crazy email or something and we'll look into it. Nothing of this nature than any of us could recall."

After gunshots fired, the station’s broadcast showed an image caught on camera displaying a man in dark clothing facing the camera with a weapon on his right hand.

The White House after ‘Virginia shooting’ expressed that the incident is another example of gun violence and that is “becoming all too common.”

Spokesman of the White House Josh Earnest told reporters that a new legislation that could pass will have a “tangible impact of reducing gun violence in this country,".



TRTWorld and agencies