Virginia press reporter Alison Parker, 24, and cameraman Adam Ward, 27, were shot and killed throughout a live broadcast on Wednesday. The presumed shooter was a previous staff member of the TV station.
Vester Flanagan, 41, shot himself as Virginia State Police were closing in on a rental vehicle on Interstate 66 in Fauquier County, WDBJ7 stated. Virginia state police stated the suspect refused to stop when identified by troopers and sped away.
Minutes later, the suspect’s vehicle ran the roadway and crashed, police stated in a statement, including the troopers approached the vehicle and found the motorist with a gunshot injury. He was required to Inova Fairfax Medical facility near Washington, where he died.
“It’s evident that this gentleman was interrupted in some method at the way things had actually transpired at some part of his life,” Overton told a news conference.
“It appears things were spiraling out of control, however we’re still looking into that,” he said. “We still have a lengthy investigation to conduct which’s our focus as we progress.”
Flanagan had taken legal action against another station where he worked in Florida, alleging he had been discriminated against due to the fact that he was black.
Flanagan said he was called a “monkey” by a manufacturer in a suit filed in federal court against a Tallahassee station, WTWC, in 2000. He also stated a manager at the station called black people lazy. The Florida case was settled and dismissed the next year, court records show.
WDBJ7 President and General Supervisor Jeff Marks said he might not find out a particular connection between Flanagan and the two dead journalists.
Speaking with CNN about Flanagan, he added, “Do you think of that everyone who leaves your business under tough scenarios is going to take objective?”
“Why were they (Parker and Ward) the targets, and not I or somebody else in management?” he stated.
The station’s morning broadcast showed Parker speaking with Gardner about the lake and tourist development in the location. Gunshots appeared, and as Ward fell his video camera struck the ground but kept running. An image caught on camera showed exactly what appeared to be a guy in dark clothes facing the cam with a weapon in his right-hand man.
The station explained the two dead journalists as an ambitious reporter-and-cameraman team who often produced light and breezy feature stories for the morning program.
“I can not tell you how much they were enjoyed,” Marks said.
They were both engaged to be married to other people at the station.
A couple living throughout from the shopping center where the shooting happened said cops burst into their apartment or condo and awakened them at gunpoint. Cops said they were trying to find the shooter, according to the lady, who identified herself only as Annie.
“I moved from Philly (Philadelphia) to obtain far from that type of stuff,” she stated, adding that she had actually remained in the location a few months.
The White Residence stated the shooting was another example of gun violence that is “becoming all too typical.”
White House spokesperson Josh Earnest, reflecting frustration that President Barack Obama has revealed over his inability to push through laws to tighten up weapon laws, told press reporters that Congress could pass legislation that would have a “concrete impact on minimizing weapon violence in this nation.”
According to his social media sites, Flanagan attended San Francisco State University. A university spokesperson stated he graduated in 1995 with a degree in radio and television.