A 58-year-old man opened fire Thursday (July 23) night inside a Lafayette movie theater, killing two and injuring at least seven before killing himself, officials said.
Lafayette Police Chief Jim Craft said three people were dead, including the gunman, who was described as a “lone white male.”
Craft said the status of those injured ranged from non-life-threatening to critical.
Officers responded to an “active shooter situation” at the Grand 16 on Johnston Street around 7:30 p.m. Officers heard gunshots as they entered the building, he said, and found the man dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound inside one of the theaters.
Craft said the man used a handgun, and investigators still were working to determine a motive. He said investigators don’t know whether the shooting was random or if the gunman had an intended target.
He said officials closed another Grand Theatre in Lafayette as a precaution.
Louisiana State Police Col. Mike Edmonson said authorities “have no reason to believe this individual acted beyond this location.”
“We believe at this point the scene is secure,” he said.
Katie Domingue told the Lafayette Daily Advertiser the shooting happened in a showing of the movie “Trainwreck.”
“We heard a loud pop we thought was a firecracker,” she said.
Domingue told the newspaper she saw “an older white man” stand up and shoot down into the theater, but not in her direction. She said she heard about six shots.
“He wasn’t saying anything,” she said. “I didn’t hear anybody screaming either.”
Clay Henry, vice president of operations for Acadian Ambulance, told the Associated Press eight of the 10 people shot were brought to the hospital. The gunman and one other person were pronounced dead at the scene, he said.
There were about 100 people in the theater at the time of the shooting, Sgt. Brooks David of the Louisiana State Police told CNN.