2 Fredericton police officers among 4 people killed in shooting, suspect in custody
Two Fredericton Police Force officers are among four people killed in a shooting on the city’s north side Friday morning.
The officers have been identified as 45-year-old Const. Robb Costello, a 20-year veteran of the force, and 43-year-old Const. Sara Burns, who joined the force two years ago.
During a news conference Friday afternoon, police said the officers had been responding to a report of shots fired. They arrived at an apartment building on Brookside Drive, where they found two civilians — a man and a woman — on the ground.
A family member has identified 42-year-old Donnie Robichaud as one of the two civilians killed in the attack, along with a woman who has yet to be identified.
Sean Callahan says his cousin was a father of three.
Police said the suspect was being treated for serious injuries “related to this morning’s shooting incident.” They are not releasing any other information about the suspect, pending an investigation by the RCMP Major Crime Unit.
Horizon Health indicated earlier in the day that “multiple victims” were being treated at the city’s Dr. Everett Chalmers Regional Hospital.
WATCH: Fredericton resident Justin McLean describes hearing shooting, seeing bodies
During the shooting incident, police had set up a perimeter and placed the area under a lockdown.
At 11:04 a.m. AT, police confirmed there was no further threat to the public and that lockdowns were not required.
They said, however, that they would have the Brookside Drive area contained “for the foreseeable future” as the investigation continues.
For much of the morning, police had been urging the public to stay inside and lock their doors.
They were also asking people not to post information about the position or activities of police and first responders during this “active incident.”
According to the force’s Twitter account, police units responded to an “ongoing incident” on Brookside Drive at around 7:30 a.m.
“The public is asked to avoid the area and stay in their homes with doors locked at this time for their safety,” police posted on social media.
Police asked people to avoid the area of Brookside Drive between Main and Ring Road.
Tim Morehouse, a resident of an apartment complex on Brookside Drive, told The Canadian Press that he heard someone shout, “shut up! shut up!” early Friday morning.
He said he heard two gunshots, and then three more. He said he looked out his window and saw the body of a man on the ground, in the back parking lot of 237 Brookside Dr.
He said he called 911, then he heard more shots and he looked out his window and saw two police officers on the ground.
WATCH: Fredericton shooting: Resident describes ‘chaos’ as shooting unfolded
Fellow resident David MacCoubrey told The Canadian Press that he awoke in his apartment around 7:07 a.m. to the sound of gunshots “10 metres from my bed.”
“It sounded like the first one came from right outside my bedroom window … I was hoping for the two seconds that I was groggy that it was kids blowing off firecrackers,” he said.
“Then two more happened within the first three minutes.”
He said he initially heard three gunshots but then heard as many as 17 more between the time he woke up and 8:30 a.m.
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MacCoubrey said his apartment complex has four buildings in a square and it sounded like the shots were coming from the middle of the square. He noted police had been searching the complex and he was sitting on the floor of his home away from the windows.
During the incident, police told people to refrain from calling the police station because of the high volume of calls. In the case of emergency, people were advised to call 911.
Halifax Regional Police Chief Jean-Michel Blais tweeted he has spoken to Fredericton Police Force’s chief to offer any support they needed.
Premier Brian Gallant issued a statement Friday morning following the arrest of the suspect.
“We are all shocked and saddened to learn this morning of the ongoing tragic incident in Fredericton,” he said.
“On behalf of all New Brunswickers, I offer my condolences, thoughts and prayers to the victims and their families. During this difficult time, our thoughts are also with the courageous women and men on the front lines working to keep us safe.”
Gallant went on to ask New Brunswickers to follow the instructions of law enforcement officials working in the area.
Fredericton’s mayor, Mike O’Brien, tweeted that the city’s hearts were broken “by the murder of our two brave police officers” and asked people to protect the officers’ families.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Ralph Goodale also sent messages of condolences. Goodale said he was “deeply concerned” about the shooting.
— With a file from The Canadian Press
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