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18 killed, 13 injured in Maine mass shootings as police hunt for gunman

At least 18 people were killed in mass shootings in Lewiston, Maine, Wednesday night, Maine Gov. Janet Mills said Thursday morning. At least 13 others were injured.

A suspect was at large, authorities said. Authorities are attempting to locate 40-year-old Robert Card, Maine Public Safety Commissioner Mike Sauschuck told reporters during a news conference Thursday morning. He is considered armed and dangerous.

Officials were still working to identify victims Thursday morning, state police Col. William Ross said during a news conference. Eight had been identified, and 10 others still needed to be identified.

At Sparetime Recreation, a bowling alley in Lewiston, six males and one female died of apparent gunshot wounds, Ross said. At Schemengees Bar and Grille about 4 miles away, seven males inside the establishment and one outside were apparently shot to death, Ross said. Three other people died at area hospitals.

Police received a 911 call about the bowling alley shooting at about 6:56 p.m. EDT, Ross said. Just over 10 minutes later, at about 7:08 p.m., police received multiple calls about the other shooting. Police from Lewiston and the surrounding area responded to the shootings.

“As you can imagine, this was a very fast-paced, fast-moving, very fluid scene, very dangerous scene that these guys and girls were going into,” Ross said.

According to a Maine law enforcement bulletin seen by CBS News, the suspect was enlisted in the U.S. Army Reserve and was believed to be stationed out of Saco, Maine. An earlier bulletin said the suspect was a trained firearms instructor, but an updated bulletin said there’s now no indication that he was an instructor.

He recently reported mental health issues, including hearing voices, according to the bulletin. He had also threatened to shoot up the National Guard base in Saco, the bulletin said, and he was reported to have been committed to a mental health facility for two weeks this summer.

In July, while training at the U.S. Military Academy in New York, leaders of the Army Reserve’s 3rd Battalion, 304th Infantry Regiment told garrison staff that the suspect was “behaving erratically,” a New York Army National Guard spokesperson told CBS News.

The New York State Police was contacted and took the suspect to an Army hospital at West Point to be evaluated, the spokesperson told CBS News. When asked about the incident, the state police told CBS News it was an active investigation and declined to comment.

According to an Army spokesperson, the suspect, a sergeant first class in the Reserve, is a petroleum supply specialist. He enlisted in the Reserve in 2002 and doesn’t have any combat deployments.

Authorities shared images of the suspect and asked people to contact them “if you recognize this individual.”

On Thursday morning, amid a massive search for the suspect, the police chief for Lisbon, Maine, some 7 miles southeast of Lewiston, urged people to contact authorities if they see anything suspicious.

“If something isn’t right, if you look out in your yard and you’re like, that door wasn’t open or, you know, that trailer wasn’t positioned that way, if you see anything suspicious, please call us because that’s how we’re going to be able to work together and be able to get to the bottom of this,” Chief Ryan McGee told reporters.

The suspect hasconnections to Massachusetts, according to CBS News Boston sources, and Massachusetts State Police and federal agents are staged at the Maine border. Canada’s Border Services Agency issued an “armed and dangerous” alert to its officers along the U.S.-Canada border, according to the Canadian Press.

According to the Maine law enforcement bulletin, a white Subaru Outback registered to the suspect was found. Maine State Police said earlier the “vehicle of interest” was recovered by police in Lisbon.

Two other vehicles were registered to the suspect in Maine: a 2022 Yamaha motorcycle and a 2019 Sea-Doo green boat, according to the bulletin.

State police urged residents of Lewiston and Lisbon to shelter in place. “Please stay inside your home with the doors locked,” they wrote on social media.

Authorities later expanded the shelter-in-place advisory to Bowdoin, Maine, where the suspect is from. “Please stay inside your homes while more than 100 investigators, both local and federal work to locate Robert Card,” they said.

The city of Auburn, Maine, which borders Lewiston to the west, also advised residents to shelter in place. Lewiston is about 45 minutes north of Portland.

Numerous schools in the region are closed Thursday due to the manhunt, CBS Portland affiliate WGME-TVreported. Portland is among the places where schools will be shut.

An owner of Schemengees said in a Facebook post: “My heart is crushed. I am at a loss for words. In a split second your world gets turn upside down for no good reason. We loss great people in this community. How can we make any sense of this. Sending out prayers to everyone.”

One man at the bowling alley said he heard about 10 shots and thought the first was a balloon popping. “I had my back turned to the door. And as soon as I turned and saw it was not a balloon — he was holding a weapon — I just booked it,” he told The Associated Press, adding that he then hurried down the length of the alley and his in the machinery behind the pins.

The Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston said in a statement that it was “reacting to a mass casualty, mass shooter event,” but did not have further details on the number of patients or severity of their injuries.

The Maine Medical Center in Portland saidit was receiving “one patient transport” from the Central Maine Medical Center in connection with the shootings. The Portland hospital said it had “alerted on-call staff and created critical care and operating room capacity in anticipation of potential patient transports.”

Maine has had between 16 to 29 homicides each year since 2012, according to the Reuters news service, citing state police.

A White House official confirmed to CBS News that President Biden had been briefed on “what’s known so far about the mass shooting in Lewiston.”

A White House official also told CBS News Mr. Biden “stepped out” of a state dinner honoring Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese “to make calls. He spoke by phone individually to Mills, Senators Angus King and Susan Collins, and Rep. Jared Golden about the shooting in Lewiston. The president offered full federal support in the wake of this horrific attack.”

The FBI is also responding, an agency official told CBS News.

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

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

Collins noted 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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