Multiple people were killed including a police officer in a shooting on Monday at a supermarket in Boulder, Colorado, and a suspect injured in the incident was arrested, authorities told a news conference.
Police said they had few immediate details of the shooting and no known motive for the violence, which unfolded at about 3 p.m. at a King Soopers grocery store in the Table Mesa area of Boulder, a city at the eastern foot of the Rockies about 28 miles (45 km) northwest of Denver.
Commander Kerry Yamaguchi of the Boulder Police Department told reporters that investigators were just starting to process the crime scene and that he did not know precisely how many people had died.
“We had multiple people who were killed in this incident, and I’m sorry to have to report that one of them was a Boulder police officer,” Yamaguchi said.
Boulder County District Attorney Michael Dougherty said the number of dead was known to law enforcement and would be made public later. Several news media outlets, some citing unnamed law enforcement sources, reported at least six lives were lost in all.
Yamaguchi said the person taken into custody was believed to be the only individual with serious injuries who survived the bloodshed. He gave no details about the suspect.
But video footage from the scene broadcast earlier by television stations showed a shirtless, bearded man in boxer shorts being led away from the store in handcuffs, before he was placed on a stretcher and loaded into an ambulance. The man in custody appeared to have a bloody leg and was limping as he walked.
A Boulder Community Health spokesman, Rich Sheehan, said one person taken by ambulance to the hospital from the supermarket was undergoing medical treatment, but Sheehan declined to describe the nature of injuries or the patient’s condition.
Witnesses described scenes of pandemonium as they heard gunfire ring out inside the supermarket.
“We were at the checkout, and shots just started going off,” said Sarah Moonshadow, 42, who was in the store with her son, Nicholas.
“And I said, ‘Nicholas get down.’ And Nicholas ducked. And we just started listening and there, just repetitive shots … and I just said, ‘Nicholas, run,’” Moonshadow later told Reuters.
Moonshadow recounted seeing “someone laying in the road” as she and her son fled the store.
“And I tried to run towards him, and Nicholas pulled me away and he said, ‘We have to go.’ And we just ran and hid behind the building.”
The woman broke down in sobs, adding, “I couldn’t help anybody.”
Dean Schiller, who described himself as a journalist and who was live-streaming footage from the scene for a YouTube channel identified as ZFG Videography, said in interviews with local media he heard what sounded like gunshots as he exited the grocery store. Schiller also said he saw three apparent shooting victims, but had no information about their conditions.
Aerial TV news footage showed a heavy law enforcement presence outside the supermarket, along with ambulances and fire trucks, as police led customers and workers out of the store with hands on their heads.
Table Mesa is home to the hilltop laboratory of the National Center for Atmospheric Research. The supermarket is located about 2 miles from the University of Colorado’s flagship campus.
Colorado Governor Jared Polis said on Twitter he was monitoring events unfolding in Boulder, adding, “My prayers are with our fellow Coloradans in this time of sadness and grief as we learn more about the extent of the tragedy.”
The FBI and agents of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives were assisting police and sheriff’s deputies in the investigation, authorities said.