A gunman opened fire inside a Minneapolis sign company on Thursday, killing five people including himself and wounding four others, police said.
Minneapolis Police spokesman Steve McCarty said five people were dead at Accent Signage Systems, including the gunman. Three others were in critical condition at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis and a forth had non-life threatening injuries, he said.
He declined to identify those killed or wounded, and said he did not know what connection the shooter may have had with the business, if any. A neighbor, Heather Buckingham, who identified herself as a former receptionist at Accent Signage, told local station KARE-TV that the suspected gunman had been laid off by the company Thursday.
A representative from Accent Signage Systems could not be reached for comment. A July article in a local business publication said the company had 28 employees. Police cordoned off the area around the company and held residents back.
The company is located on a tree-lined residential street. "It's the only industrial business right in the middle of a residential neighborhood," Minneapolis Mayor R. T. Rybak said in a telephone interview with Reuters. "In a great neighborhood and a great business, we have a horrible tragedy." Rybak said he could not remember anything similar ever happening in Minneapolis.
Gov. Mark Dayton said in a statement: "I deplore this senseless violence. There is no place for it anywhere in Minnesota. I extend my deepest condolences to the families and friends of the innocent people killed or wounded."
The Minneapolis shooting comes a month after a work-related shooting near the Empire State Building in New York, which killed two people and wounded nine. This followed an July mass shooting in a crowded cinema in Colorado and an attack on a Sikh temple in Wisconsin in August, which rekindled debate about gun control in the United States.
Reuters reporting by David Bailey; editing by Mary Wisniewski, Mohammad Zargham and John Stonestreet. AOL Jobs contributed to this report.
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