Multiple casualties, injuries in shooting at Maryland plant


(NewsNation) — Three employees were killed, another was critically injured, and one state trooper was injured in a shooting at a manufacturing plant in Smithsburg, Maryland, around 3:30 p.m. ET Thursday, according to the local sheriff’s department.

The 23-year-old suspect was no longer considered to be a threat to the community by approximately 4 p.m. ET, the Washington County Sheriff’s Department said.

Mark Frey, 50, Charles Minnick, 31, and Joshua Wallace, 30, died in the shooting, authorities announced Thursday night.

Police identified the critically injured victim as Brandon Michael, 42.

The shooting happened at Columbia Machine, a plant that produces concrete parts and equipment, the sheriff’s department confirmed to NewsNation.

“All we can share at this time is that we are working with Maryland local authorities and we are in constant contact with them,” Columbia Machine said. “The safety and well-being of our employees is our No. 1 priority.”

The FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives are assisting local authorities with the case.

Police say the male suspect fled the scene of the shooting before law enforcement arrived, but a description of the suspect was quickly relayed to other responding officers, who confronted the suspect a few miles away.

A Maryland state trooper shot and injured the suspect during a confrontation, and the suspect also struck the trooper in the shoulder with a bullet.

Both the suspect and the trooper injured in the gunfight were hospitalized for treatment. At approximately 9 p.m. ET, it was announced that the trooper had been released from the hospital.

The suspect’s identity will not be released until charging documents are filed, according to police.

The weapon used at both scenes was a semi-automatic handgun. The exact caliber, make and model are also not being released at this time.

Police could not confirm during their news conference any motive of the shooter or whether all of the victims were employees of Columbia Machine.

U.S. Rep. David Trone, D-Md., called the incident a “mass shooting” on Twitter and said his office was “in contact” with law enforcement officials on the ground.

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