Deion Patterson, Atlanta Mass Shooting Suspect: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

deion Patterson

Atlanta PD Deion Patterson

Deion Patterson was identified by Atlanta police as the man accused of opening fire during an appointment at Northside Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia, on May 3, 2023, wounding four people and killing one.

On the evening of May 3, 2023, the Cobb County Sheriff’s Department tweeted, “*UPDATE*: Deion Patterson has been apprehended. Details will be provided during a joint press conference with Atlanta PD.”

“Law enforcement has taken the suspect into custody,” Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens said in a news conference. He said the apprehension occurred “without further harm,” pledging that Patterson “will be charged and stand trial.”

A woman died and four other women are “fighting for their lives,” the mayor said, calling gun violence a national epidemic.

The mayor referenced an “enormously tense afternoon and evening.” He thanked citizens for “providing critical information” to law enforcement.

“Suspect Name – DEION PATTERSON. DOB: 10/98,” police tweeted. “Call 911 –DO NOT approach him. He is considered Armed and Dangerous.”

Atlanta police released surveillance photos of the suspect, saying Patterson was at large.

“As of 3:06pm – The shelter-in-place order has been lifted in Midtown Atlanta,” police tweeted.

Police wrote on Twitter: “APD is investigating an active shooter in the area of 1110 W Peachtree St NW. Please shelter in place, or stay out of the area.”

Here’s what you need to know:

1. Atlanta Police Released Surveillance Photos of Deion Patterson, Who Was Going to a Medical Appointment, Calling Him ‘Armed & Dangerous’

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Police released photos of the suspect.

“Based on our preliminary investigation, these are photos believed to be of the active shooter. Anyone with any information on this person’s whereabouts is asked to call 911. The suspect is believed to be armed and dangerous and should not be approached,” they wrote.

According to CNN, citing a police spokeswoman, the suspect was at the hospital for “an appointment,” and was accompanied there by his mother.

CNN reported that the suspect “became agitated, used a handgun and started shooting,” but his mother was not injured and is cooperating with police.

Atlanta Police Chief Darin Schierbaum praised the “first responder network” of multiple agencies in the news conference. He said that authorities determined Patterson had left the city of Atlanta and “remained a threat elsewhere.”

Deputy Chief Charles Hampton said in the news conference that Patterson shot the first victim shortly after he entered the building containing the medical center. He spent about two minutes inside the building and then exited by foot, Hampton said.

“We know that he had an appointment at the facility,” Hampton said, but he added that the motive is still under investigation.

He said that Patterson’s family was helpful to the investigation.

2. Deion Patterson Once Served in the U.S. Coast Guard, Reports Say

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Journalist Jennifer Bellamy tweeted that Patterson served in the U.S. Coast Guard:

“The U.S. Coast Guard confirms the #MidtownShooting suspect Deion Patterson, 24, was a member of the service, entering the Coast Guard in July 2018 and last serving as an Electrician’s Mate Second Class. He was discharged from active duty in January 2023,” she tweeted.

“Update as of 12:42pm – We are working an active shooter situation inside a building on West. Peachtree St, between 12th St and 13th St. We are aware of multiple people injured. No suspect is in custody,” Atlanta police tweeted on May 3, 2023.

They later explained in another tweet, “Update as of 1:30p – There have been no additional shots fired since the initial incident unfolded. We are currently aware of 4 shooting victims related to this situation.”

They added on Twitter, “Three have been transported to the hospital for treatment and a fourth has been pronounced deceased on scene. Officers are actively searching for the suspect and any other victims.”

The surviving victims are in critical but stable condition, Hampton said.

3. Deion Patterson Is Accused of Commandeering a Pickup Truck at a Gas Station

After the mass shooting, Patterson went to a Shell gas station, commandeered a pickup truck that was left unattended, and took the vehicle, Hampton said. Police obtained the tag of that truck from video and then received an alert that Patterson was in Cobb County, Hampton said in the news conference.

According to the Associated Press, Atlanta police said there were aware of a carjacking a few blocks from the mass shooting scene, and said that it was discovered in suburban Cobb County.

Police initially asked people to secure their buildings.

“Anyone in the area is asked to secure their building and shelter in place. Anyone not in the area is asked to stay away,” police tweeted before Patterson was caught.

Cobb County Chief Stuart VanHoozer said in the news conference that Patterson’s truck was captured on camera so officers went to look for the vehicle.

“It was a fairly chaotic scene,” he said, noting that officers “were being called to various locations about what appeared to be legitimate sightings of this individual.” He noted that citizens were fearful.

“Technology played a huge role” in capturing Patterson, VanHoozer said. Eventually, one of the tips panned out and an undercover officer spotted Patterson and confronted him, he said.

4. Video Showed the Massive Law Enforcement Response to the Mass Shooting Scene

Video showed a massive law enforcement response to the scene.

Police have not yet identified the victims or explained why they were at the hospital.

5. Northside Hospital Tweeted That There Was a ‘Shooting at Our Midtown Atlanta Location’

Northside Hospital confirmed the mass shooting and stressed that the hospital was working with law enforcement.

“Northside Hospital is cooperating with law enforcement following the shooting at our midtown #Atlanta location earlier this afternoon. We urge people in the area to shelter in place and follow instructions from law enforcement on the scene,” the hospital tweeted.

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