2 dead in Ga. shooting; suspect was ex-employee

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KENNESAW, Ga. (AP) — A disgruntled ex-employee stormed a truck rental business in camouflage and opened fire with a handgun, killing two people and critically wounding three others at his former workplace, police said.

The lone gunman fled the scene in a pickup truck and was arrested after police stopped him about a mile from the Penske Truck Rental facility, said Cobb County Police Officer Joe Hernandez. The names of the suspect and victims were not immediately released.

“He wasn’t here for very long and it wasn’t long before he was taken into custody,” Hernandez said.

There were conflicting reports about who the victims were. Penske spokesman Randy Ryerson said four victims were employees and the other was a customer, but police said none of the victims were customers. Hernandez said all of those shot were males.

About two dozen employees were working at the office, which sits about 25 miles northwest of Atlanta and consists of a couple of large buildings with bay doors, Ryerson said.

One of the victims died at the scene and another was pronounced dead at WellStar Kennestone Hospital, said Hernandez. The three surviving victims are in critical condition, said hospital spokesman Keith Bowermaster.

The suspect worked at Penske for several years, but it was unclear when and why he left.

The gunman first confronted someone in the parking lot before moving to the truck bay area, shooting victims along the way, said Hernandez. He did not try to enter the building’s second floor, which houses a small administration office.

A man who witnessed the arrest said the suspect looked “out of his mind” and “all drugged up.”

“The cops walked up on both sides of the truck, he opened the door and they threw him on the ground. He pretty much just gave up,” Michael Robertson told The Associated Press.

Penske said it was a very traumatic day.

“We want to extend our deepest concerns and sympathies for the victims of today’s shootings,” Ryerson said.

It is the second workplace shooting this month. Timothy Hendron, an employee at ABB Inc. electrical plant in St. Louis, is accused of shooting hundreds of rounds of ammunition through the sprawling plant as about 50 workers sought refuge. Authorities say he killed three men and injured five others before killing himself.


Associated Press writer Greg Bluestein in Atlanta contributed to this report.