Three people have died and seven were injured after a gunman opened fire in a Louisiana movie theatre, police have said.
The gunman, who has been described as a 58-year-old “lone white male”, killed two people after firing his weapon “numerous times” at the Grand Theatre in Lafayette before shooting himself, Police Chief Jim Craft said.
The gunman was later identified as John Russell Houser.
The injuries of those hurt in the incident ranged from non-life threatening to critical, he said.
Lafayette Police are working a shooting at the Grande Theater on Johnston Street.— Lafayette PD (LA) (@LafayettePD_LA) July 24, 2015
Col Mike Edmonson of the Louisiana state Police said about 100 people were in the theatre at at the time of the shooting.
He said police believed shots were only fired at the theatre and the gunman had not attacked anywhere else.
He said: "We have no reason to believe that this individual acted beyond this location here."
Lafayette City Marshal Brian Pope told The Daily Advertiser that a gunman had opened fire before killing himself.
In pictures: Lafayette shooting
In pictures: Lafayette shooting
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Law enforcement and other emergency personnel respond to the scene of a shooting at the Grand Theatre
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Cinema-goers were evacuated after the shooting
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FBI officials enter a building near the movie theatre where a man opened fire on film goers
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Police at the scene of a mass shooting at a cinema in Lafayette, Louisiana
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Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal speaks with the media as he provides an update on the deadly shooting at the Grand Theatre in Lafayette
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Bystanders embrace outside the Grand Theatre as emergency personnel respond to the scene of a deadly shooting
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Bystanders look on as emergency personnel respond to the scene of a deadly shooting
Katie Domingue, a witness, told the newspaper that about 20 minutes into the showing of the film “Trainwreck,” an "older white man” stood up and began shooting.
“We heard a loud pop we thought was a firecracker," she said. “He wasn’t saying anything. I didn’t hear anybody screaming either."
The Acadian Ambulance Service later tweeted a statement saying that seven other people were being transported to area hospitals.
Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal released a statement saying he was monitoring the situation before arriving to the scene. Police and FBI agents are also at the theatre to investigate.
Prayers for Lafayette at Grand Theater. Talking to state police colonel about shooting in Lafayette.— Gov. Bobby Jindal (@BobbyJindal) July 24, 2015
I'm on my way to Lafayette right now. Please say a prayer for the victims at Grand Theatre and their families.— Gov. Bobby Jindal (@BobbyJindal) July 24, 2015
Governor Jindal said one teacher jumped in front of a bullet to protect another person from being shot. The teacher was then able to pull a fire alarm.
One young witness told KATC TV-3 that he safely escaped the scene but couldn’t believe what he had witnessed in his hometown. He said he saw one woman with a gunshot wound in her stomach.
“There was a woman standing in a dress full of blood. She was looking right at me. That woman probably never did a bad thing in her life — what did she do to deserve that?”
Amy Schumer, the star of the film "Trainwreck," tweeted her condolences after the news broke.
My heart is broken and all my thoughts and prayers are with everyone in Louisiana.— Amy Schumer (@amyschumer) July 24, 2015