A shooting in a Philadelphia neighborhood on Monday left five people dead and two children injured.
According to NBC News, police have arrested the suspect, a 40-year-old man, who was wearing a ballistic vest and was armed with a semi-automatic rifle and a handgun at the time of the shooting. The gunman also had a police scanner in his possession.
"This country needs to re-examine its conscience and find out how to get guns out of dangerous people's hands," Mayor Jim Kenney said at a news conference Tuesday afternoon. "A person walking down a city street with an AR-style rifle and shooting randomly at people while wearing a bulletproof vest with multiple magazines is disgraceful but all too common situation in America."
Police have identified the deceased victims as Lashyd Merritt, 20; Dymir Stanton, 29; Ralph Moralis, 59; Daujan Brown, 15; and Joseph Wamah Jr., 31. The injured, two boys ages two and 13, were taken to a local hospital where they remain in stable condition. According to police, both boys were shot in the leg.
During a news conference Tuesday afternoon, District Attorney Larry Krasner said that authorities had also arrested another man initially accused of picking up a gun and returning fire. However, the man was later released without charges after authorities concluded he did not discharge a firearm illegally but had acted in self-defense.
As noted by Philadelphia Police Staff Inspector Ernest Ransom, the suspect opened fire "aimlessly at occupied vehicles and individuals on the street as they walked."
One vehicle that a woman was driving was shot. Meanwhile, one of her twin children, a 2-year-old boy, was shot in the left leg. His brother was injured in the eye by shattered glass.
Another woman, 33, was also injured by shattered glass.
The motive behind the shooting had been under investigation.
Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle M. Outlaw commended the first officers who arrived at the scene in response to the attack at around 8:29 pm Monday night. Despite running away, the suscept surrendered after he was cornered at an alley.
"I can't even describe the level of bravery and courage that was shown," she said.
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Drew Hallowell/Stringer
Milton Quintanilla is a freelance writer and content creator. He is a contributing writer for Christian Headlines and the host of the For Your Soul Podcast, a podcast devoted to sound doctrine and biblical truth. He holds a Masters of Divinity from Alliance Theological Seminary.