3 Dead in California Workplace Shooting

Employee opened fire in Fresno food service plant

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Nov 6, 2012 1:54 PM CST | Updated Nov 6, 2012 4:40 PM CST

(Newser) – A "discharged parolee" opened fire at a Fresno chicken plant today, killing two people and wounding two more before fatally shooting himself, the Los Angeles Times reports. The suspect was identified as Lawrence Jones, 42; he had worked at the Valley Protein plant for 14 months. Jones reportedly showed up for work just before 5am; police say he "pulled out a handgun and began opening fire" around 8:30am, moving methodically between three of the victims, putting a handgun against their head or neck and opening fire, reports the AP.

Two of the three men shot inside the processing plant have died; they did not hear Jones approach because of the plant's noise level, and may have been wearing noise protectors as well, police explained. A fourth victim, a woman, was shot as she tried to flee the plant. Jones apparently tried to shoot a fifth person, but he was out of bullets. He reportedly died a short time later of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. About 30 employees witnessed the shootings.

An unidentified woman cries as she's rushed into a car after learning of a workplace shooting in Fresno, Calif.
An unidentified woman cries as she's rushed into a car after learning of a workplace shooting in Fresno, Calif.   (AP Photo/Gary Kazanjian)
Police search an area where a workplace shooting occurred.
Police search an area where a workplace shooting occurred.   (AP Photo/Gary Kazanjian)
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