The gunman who was shot dead by police after opening fire inside a Texas Walmart where he worked before taking two people hostage has been identified by police as Mohammad Moghaddam.
Police are calling it a “workplace violence” incident.
The 54-year-old suspect was shot by a SWAT officer Tuesday afternoon after holding two people hostage at the Amarillo store, including a store manager who he had a dispute with, for more than an hour, police said in a press release. No one else was injured.
Few details about Moghaddam could be found. A photo of him was not available. Police said more information will be released in another press release.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Two Hostages Were Released Unharmed & No One Other Than Moghaddam Was Shot
The incident was first reported about 11 a.m., police said. After about an hour and 20 minutes, police said the suspect had been shot dead by officers.
“Two hostages in the room were released and are not injured,” police said in a press release. No other gunshot victims were found during a search of the store.
According to a press release, the investigation into the incident at the 4215 Canyon Drive Walmart remains ongoing.
“The initial call of an armed person/shooting possible barricaded suspect call came in at about 11:06 a.m., Amarillo Police said. “APD and many other agencies responded to the call. One or more hostages were taken by a male suspect inside the store. APD and officers from other agencies responded and entered the store, and APD SWAT officers also responded.”
An Amarillo Police SWAT officer “came into contact with the suspect and shot him” at 12:22 p.m.
The case is being investigated by the department’s Special Crimes Unit.
2. Moghaddam Was Angry Because a Co-Worker Was Promoted Over Him
Police said at a press conference the gunman was a Walmart employee and they are considering it to be “workplace violence.”
Moghaddam was upset that a co-worker had been promoted over him, the Amarillo Globe-News reports.
He took his manager, Glen Jones, and an unidentified second person hostage in Jones’ office, according to the newspaper.
3. He Was From Iran & Lived in Amarillo With His Wife & Children
Mohammad Moghaddam was from Iran, the Amarillo Globe-News reports. He lived in Amarillo with his wife and children.
His wife, Leila Gachlou, was brought to the Walmart by police and gave them a picture of her husband, according to dispatches.
The family moved to Amarillo from Iran eight years ago, his children, Adel, 30, and Atefeh, 27, told the Globe-News. His wife also worked at Walmart.
“I saw him this morning. He was happy and ate breakfast and then went to work,” Adel told the newspaper.
It was originally reported by KFDA-TV and police that Moghaddam was from Somalia.
4. He Was Wearing a Walmart Shirt & Khaki Pants
Moghaddam was wearing a Walmart shirt and khaki pants, according to witnesses, but it is not known if he was still an employee of the store.
Police have not said how long Moghaddam has worked there or what his job was.
“As soon as we heard about the situation at our store in Amarillo, Texas, we acted immediately,” Walmart said in a statement. “All customers and our two associates who were held hostage are safe. This was a very difficult situation and we are thankful for the quick response from law enforcement
5. 911 Callers Say He Was Shooting & Heard People Screaming
The initial call was for a suspect who was actively shooting inside the store, according to police radio dispatches. Several people were inside the store and “screaming” could be heard.
You can listen to the initial police and fire radio dispatches below:
Police, firefighters and ambulances swarmed the Walmart area and officers got everyone inside the building out. They then searched the store and did not find any gunshot victims.
Moghaddam is believed to have fired multiple shots into the ceiling near the store’s checkout area, the Amarillo Globe-News reports.
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