Texas shooting: Gunman 'shoots doctor before killing self' at El Paso military hospital

The FBI have taken over the investigation

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The Independent US

A gunman has opened fire at a veterans' medical clinic in West Texas, reportedly killing a doctor before being found dead himself.

The incident was reported at around 3.10pm on Tuesday afternoon and saw a major El Paso military facility put on lockdown for around an hour.

In a press conference on Tuesday night, nearby Fort Bliss's Major General Stephen Twitty confirmed that the incident had been resolved following two deaths.

"The alleged shooter is dead, and we have one casualty. That casualty is deceased. All other VA patients and staff are safe," he said.

Local TV station CBS4 in El Paso reported that the victim was a doctor and quoted officials as saying that the gunman had turned his gun on himself. It said nearby schools had also been put on lockdown, though that was lifted later in the afternoon.

Major General Twitty said the incident took place at the El Paso Veterans Affairs Health Care System, located in a complex that includes the William Beaumont Army Medical Centre.

He declined to provide any details about the victim of the shooting, or confirm whether or not the shooter killed himself or was engaged in gunfire with responding officers.

An FBI investigation has been launched, and special agent Douglas Lindquist said there were hundreds of potential witnesses, many of whom were patients or would-be patients at the clinic.

Though there was no longer considered to be a threat to the public, the VA clinic was due to remain closed throughout Wednesday, its acting director Peter Dancy told reporters.

The clinic came under scrutiny last year after a federal audit showed it had some of the longest wait times in the US for veterans trying to see a doctor for the first time. A survey found that they waited on average more than two months to see a mental health professional and even longer to see a doctor.

The Veterans Affairs association said that it was "deeply saddened by the tragic situation that has occurred in El Paso". "The safety and continued care of our veterans and the staff will be our focus throughout this situation," the agency said.