When a gunman opened fire on revelers enjoying a night out in Dayton, Ohio, early Sunday, he killed nine people in less than a minute. It was the second mass shooting in the United States in less than 24 hours.
How it unfolded
The shooting broke out shortly after 1 a.m. Sunday as a man armed with an assault rifle approached the Ned Peppers bar in the downtown Oregon District, where thousands of people fill bars and nightclubs each weekend.
When someone from Ned Peppers grabbed the barrel of the shooter’s long gun, the man picked up a handgun to continue the assault. Police officers on patrol nearby shot and killed the gunman less than a minute after the shooting began.
“I really want to — think about that minute. … If we did not have police in the Oregon District and the thousands of people in the Oregon District enjoying their Saturday evening, what we could have had in this city,” Mayor Nan Whaley said.
The entire incident unfolded on the street.
The gunman has been identified as a 24-year-old Connor Betts, according to local and federal law enforcement sources. The FBI and local law enforcement have served a search warrant at the shooter’s family home in Bellbrook, Ohio.
The shooter was wearing body armor, used a “.223 high-capacity” gun and had additional magazines with him, according to Whaley.
The .223 caliber is used in rifles like the AR-15 assault rifle used in previous mass shootings.
The gunman’s sister, 22-year-old Megan Betts, was among those killed. Another 27 people were injured.
The other eight people killed were identified as:
— Lois L. Oglesby, 27
— Saeed Saleh, 38
— Derrick R. Fudge, 57
— Logan M. Turner, 30
— Nicholas P. Cumer, 25
— Thomas J. McNichols, 25
— Beatrice N. Warren-Curtis, 36
— Monica E. Brickhouse, 39
Local, state and federal authorities, including the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, are investigating the shooting. The motive is not yet known.
During the execution of a search warrant, authorities found writings linked to the gunman that show he had an interest in killing people, two federal law enforcement sources told CNN.
A preliminary assessment of the writings did not indicate any racial or political motive, the sources said. At an afternoon news conference, police said that they are looking through information for any indication of motive.
A vigil is planned for 8 p.m. Sunday. Condolences for the city and calls to end gun violence resonated across social media Sunday, with the hashtags #DaytonStrong and #EnoughisEnough trending on Twitter.
State lawmakers and city officials thanked first responders for their role in quelling the violence and called for bipartisan efforts to address gun violence.
US Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, called on Congress “to do something” about its “inadequate” response to gun violence. He urged the Trump administration to consider measures that would strengthen background checks “so these incidents don’t happen week after week in our country.”
He also called on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to “bring the Senate back tomorrow” to pass a gun-buying background check measure in the wake of the shootings in Dayton and in El Paso.
Speaking broadly about mental health issues, US Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, said “something deeper” was going on and called on lawmakers as well as communities to come together to address “some of the more cultural problems we face as a country.”
“We also have to look deep into our hearts and figure out how someone can point a gun at a stranger,” he said.
“God bless the people of El Paso Texas. God bless the people of Dayton, Ohio,” he wrote.