Multiple people reported shot at Chicago hospital, including a police officer
On Monday afternoon, there was an active shooter incident at Mercy Hospital, which is located on the south side of Chicago, at 25th and Madison Avenue. Four people were killed, including the gunman, an emergency room doctor, and Chicago police officer Samuel Jimenez.
The shooting began in the Mercy Hospital parking lot as part of a domestic dispute. Sources say the gunman shot his former fiancee, a doctor at Mercy Hospital, who was arriving for work. A witness told The Chicago Tribune that he saw the couple talking to each other, then the gunman shot her three times in the chest. When she fell down, he reportedly shot her three more times. The woman died from her injuries and has been identified as Dr. Tamara E. O'Neal, a doctor of emergency medicine.
The gunman ran into the hospital and continued his rampage, apparently shooting people at random. Innocent bystanders scrambled for cover, ducking behind desks and locking themselves in the nearest rooms. A female staff member, identified as a pharmaceutical assistant, was fatally shot. On Twitter, some people shared videos of the chaotic, terrifying scene.
Chicago police officers arrived at the scene and exchanged fire with the shooter. The gunman was found dead from a gunshot wound to the head at approximately 3:20pm. The wounded police officer was found in the lobby, and taken to receive emergency treatment, along with two other victims, but unfortunately they did not survive. At about 4:40pm, Mercy Hospital announced that police had secured the location and the other patients were safe. Shots were fired at a second police officer, but luckily the bullet didn't hit him. Instead, it struck his holster, and became embedded in the gun.
Witnesses described the scene as "mass chaos" and "like a movie scene," while speaking to ABC7. The shooter reportedly attempted to get into the pharmacy, but they followed protocol, closing their shutters and locking the door. One of the employees told the media, "You know you're safe but you're like 'Oh my goodness, is this real?' But you're worried because you can hear that man shooting in the lobby. You're worried because you know there's patients in that lobby, you're worried for your coworkers you know are in that lobby."
Less than a month ago, there was a mass shooting at the Borderline Bar & Grill, a country-western dance hall in Thousand Oaks, California. The gunman, a 28-year-old Marine veteran, killed 12 people in a senseless rampage, including a survivor of the 2017 Las Vegas massacre, at a country-western festival, the deadliest mass shooting in United States history. As of this writing, the name of the Mercy Hospital shooter has not been released. His horrific crime, hurting people in a place that helps, adds to the lengthy list of senseless shootings in America. If you're not safe at school, a bar or a hospital, where can you be safe?