Friday, November 27, 2015

UPDATED Planned Parenthood Shooting: Active shooter on Centennial Boulevard

Posted By on Fri, Nov 27, 2015 at 1:44 PM

Update, 7:30 p.m.

Three people died
in today's shooting at Colorado Springs Westside Planned Parenthood, Colorado Springs Police Department Lt. Catherine Buckley confirmed during what appeared to be the final news conference of the day on the shooting.

The victims include two civilians and one University of Colorado at Colorado Springs officer.

Buckley also clarified that nine people had been hospitalized with injuries.

Police Chief Pete Carey and Mayor John Suthers made brief statements during the conference, expressing their condolences to the victims' families. Suthers also praised the numerous officers and first responders on the scene today, noting the tragedy could have claimed many more lives.

Prior to the conference, UCCS Chancellor Pam Shockley-Zalabak issued a brief press release— VM

Update, 5:40 p.m.

Colorado Springs Police Department Lt. Catherine Buckley confirmed the shooting suspect, a male, was taken into custody at 4:52 p.m. and escorted from the scene. The suspect had not been identified and his motivations were not yet know, Buckley said, adding the investigation could take hours if not days to complete.

She confirmed 11 people had been taken to the hospital with injuries, including five officers. She would not confirm any fatalities

Buckley was joined by CSPD Chief Pete Carey, Colorado Springs Mayor John Suthers, and Colorado Springs Fire Department Chief Christopher Riley. They thanked the various agencies that joined the response effort to today's shooting, including CSPD, the El Paso County Sheriff's Office, University of Colorado at Colorado Springs police, CSFD, Colorado State Patrol, Colorado Bureau of Investigation, the ATF (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives), and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, among others. 

Buckley reiterated the scene will remain closed off while officers attempt to stabilize the area. It is likely to remain a crime scene for some time after it is stabilized. Because CSPD officers exchanged gunfire with the suspect, Buckley explained, state law mandates the El Paso County Sheriff's Office to conduct its own investigation of those "officer-involved" shootings. — VM 

Update, 5 p.m.

KOAA is reporting the suspect has been detained, although CSPD has not yet confirmed. However, that is indeed what we heard come across the police scanner moments ago, as well. — VM

Update, 4:43 p.m. 

Colorado Springs Mayor John Suthers' office released the following statement: "Mayor is on scene working with Incident Command, and has been for several hours. He is fully engaged with the situation. He will make a statement to the press after the scene is stabilized, but at this time, the appropriate communications are coming from the appropriate agencies.

"The Mayor would like to remind citizens to avoid the impacted area to allow law enforcement and emergency responders to function as efficiently as possible." — VM

Update, 4:24 p.m.

The suspect remains inside the Planned Parenthood building, and although officers have exchanged gunfire with him, they have not communicated verbally, said CSPD Lt. Catherine Buckley during the most recent news conference.

Police are working to remove people from the building, Buckley said, acknowledging that "numerous" people have already been evacuated. The clinic was open for appointments today, she added. Both staff and patients were present.

Buckley estimated the scene will take hours to stabilize: The suspect remains in the building, and, Buckley said, officers will need to inspect and investigate unknown "items" the suspect took into the building. Those items may include propane tanks, she confirmed. — VM

Update, 3:36 p.m.

The shooting is still considered "active," Buckley said during the most recent news conference moments ago.

She confirmed the gunman remains in the building and at least one officer had exchanged fire with him inside. Officials do not have any evidence of a second gunman, she said.

The number of officers reported injured is still at four, Buckley said. Civilians have been injured, although she did not say how many or how severe the injuries might be.  

Federal agents have joined local law enforcement agencies on the scene, she added. — VM

Update, 2:39 p.m

CSPD's Buckley confirms a fourth officer has been injured in today's shooting. — Vanessa Martinez

Original post, 1:44 p.m.

Three police officers have been injured and an unknown number of civilians hurt in a shooting at Planned Parenthood on Centennial Boulevard that began just after 11:30 a.m. today.

The shooter has not been arrested. "We do not have the shooter at this point," Springs Police Lt. Catherine Buckley said at a news conference that concluded moments ago (about 1:35 p.m).

Extent of the injuries isn't known, she said. Springs police, El Paso County Sheriff's deputies and the State Patrol are on the scene. Businesses have been locked down. Police haven't ruled out a second gunman.

Buckley couldn't say how many people had been transported to hospitals for treatment. She urged the public to stay out of the area. Centennial has been closed from Fillmore Street to Garden of the Gods Road.

"We're still trying to determine where the shooter is at this point," she said. "We're trying to provide emergency medical service to anyone who was injured." She said officers plan and train for additional shooters, and are investigating that possibility.

The shooting comes about three weeks after Dana Ott was shot as he threatened officers on a residential street not far from today's event, and a month after officers gunned down Noah Harpham after he killed three people at random in the Platte Avenue and Prospect Street vicinity.



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