Nine people were killed and dozens were hurt when a suspect wearing body armor opened fire outside a bar in Dayton, Ohio, early Sunday before responding officers shot the armed assailant to death less than a minute into the rampage, according to officials.
It was the nation’s second mass shooting in less than 24 hours after at least 20 people were slain in El Paso, Texas.
The Dayton Police Department said on Twitter the incident unfolded at 1 a.m. in the city’s Oregon District near downtown, but officers were nearby and “were able to respond and put an end to it quickly.”
“What’s scary about that is that if they were not there, the hundreds of lost lives we would’ve had in the Oregon District,” Whaley said.
Ned Peppers Bar said it was ” shaken and confused” in a statement released on the bar’s website Sunday.
“We have police regularly staffed next to our business who engaged the shooter and neutralized the threat,” the statement said. “Dayton Police could not have done a better job responding to this senseless act of violence. We cannot commend them high enough.”
Ned Peppers Bar said it was holding clothing items left at the scene but was unsure when the business would reopen.
“We certainly are not in the shooter’s head, but he was wearing body armor and had extra magazines,” Whaley said, adding that the suspect was carrying a .223-caliber rifle.
No police officers were injured.
The suspected gunman was identified as 24 year old Connor Stephen Betts
Betts lived in the Dayton suburb of Bellbrook, where FBI and Dayton police executed a search warrant on his home Sunday morning, according to Bellbrook Police Chief Doug Doherty. The chief told reporters that his agency had no previous contact with Betts.