Valerie Edwards, Daily Mail, April 6, 2021
A Navy hospital corpsman shot two sailors at a business park in Maryland before breaching a gate at the nearby Fort Detrick Army base where he was killed by military personnel, authorities said.
Married, father-of-two Fantahun Girma Woldesenbet, 38, who had a rank of E-4, or petty officer third class, entered a business at the Riverside Tech Park, which is connected to the Fort Detrick base, causing people inside to flee, Frederick Police Chief Jason Lando said.
After the shooting, the medic drove about 10 minutes to Fort Detrick, where he was shot by base personnel, Lando said at a news conference.
Lando said Woldesenbet did not reside on base, adding that he lives in the 100 block of Willow Dale Drive in Frederick.
According to Lando, a rifle was used in the shooting, but he didn’t give any other details. It’s unclear if the rifle was issued by the military.
Authorities said the victims, who are both Navy sailors, were flown to the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Centre in Baltimore where one remains in critical condition.
Lando said the second victim is still being treated, but he is expected to be released on Wednesday. Neither victim has been notified pending next of kin notification.
A hospital spokeswoman did not respond to an email asking for an update on the victims.
The incident unfolded around 8.20am Tuesday morning, Frederick police said.
Just after 9am, police tweeted that they were responding to ‘an active shooter in the 8400 block of Progress Drive’.
Woldesenbet then drove to the Fort Detrick base where he drove through a gate at an entrance to the base before base personnel confronted him on a road, according to Fort Detrick spokeswoman Lanessa Hill.
‘It wasn’t that long before he came through the gate. Not even a quarter of a mile,’ Hill said.
She said Frederick police had given them advance notice by putting out a BOLO, ‘so we knew that he was out there’.
In addition, Brigadier Gen Michael Talley confirmed that base personnel attempted to search Woldesenbet before he sped past them in his personal vehicle.
After passing through the gate, Talley said Woldesenbet was stopped in a parking lot and exited his vehicle while brandishing a weapon.
He said base police then ‘neutralized the subject’ before rendering life-saving efforts for about 20 minutes’.
Talley said there were no other injuries on the Fort Detrick base.
Police cordoned off Woldesenbet’s garden-style apartment building in Frederick City, a few miles from the site of the shooting.
A neighbor, Ava Target, said she knew Woldesenbet only by sight, and that he lived on the top floor of the apartment complex with a wife and two kids. She wasn’t aware of any problems.
Mark Nelson, a firefighter who lives in a row of townhomes across the street from the base, said he heard the base blast warning sirens Tuesday morning.
‘I heard, I don’t know what they call it, but they were like air raid sirens, and I knew something was going on,’ Nelson said.
Lando called the shootings ‘very tragic’.
‘It’s happening too frequently. Every time we turn on the TV we’re seeing something like this happening. And now it’s happening in our backyards.’
Jeremy Mutschler, director of marketing for Nicolock Paving Stones, said that his understanding is that the shooting was near the company’s Frederick location but not at the business itself.
‘One of the victims who was wounded entered our facility looking for help and we were able to assist and call the authorities,’ said Mutschler, who is based in New York.
Lando said investigators were still gathering information about the incident and could not say what the relationship, if any, was between the victims and the suspect.
Officials declined to disclose the duties of the shooter or the two victims, or to say whether the motive behind the incident may have been related to their work. All three were assigned to the base, officials said.