'Mass Casualty Situation' After Shooting at Fla. Gay Club

Gunman dead after he opens up at closing time in Orlando hotspot; other injuries unknown
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jun 12, 2016 5:38 AM CDT
'Mass Casualty Situation' After Shooting at Fla. Gay Club
Jermaine Towns, left, and Brandon Shuford wait down the street from a multiple shooting at a nightclub in Orlando, Fla., Sunday, June 12, 2016. Towns said his brother was in the club at the time. A gunman opened fire at a nightclub in central Florida, and multiple people have been wounded, police said...   (Phelan M. Ebenhack)

A gunman opened fire at a well-known central Florida nightclub, and multiple people have been wounded, police said Sunday. The shooter inside the club is dead, Orlando Police said on the department's Twitter page. It was not immediately clear how the shooter died, reports the AP, or how many people were wounded. Police described it as a "mass casualty situation." "Multiple injuries" were reported following the shooting at Pulse Orlando, a popular gay dance club. People were told to stay away from the area. Multiple emergency vehicles have responded, including the Orlando Fire Department's bomb squad and hazardous material team. Police said via Twitter that a noise heard near the shooting site was a "controlled explosion." Pulse Orlando posted on its own Facebook page around 2am: "Everyone get out of pulse and keep running."

The incident follows the fatal shooting Friday of 22-year-old singer Christina Grimmie, who was killed after her Orlando concert by a 27-year-old Florida man who later killed himself. Dozens of police vehicles, including a SWAT team, swarmed the area around the club. At least two police pickup trucks were seen taking what appeared to be shooting victims to the Orlando Regional Medical Center. Jon Alamo said he was at the back of one of the club's rooms when a man holding a weapon came into the front. "I heard 20, 40, 50 shots," Alamo said. "The music stopped." Mina Justice was outside trying to contact her 30-year-old son Eddie, who texted her when the shooting happened and asked her to call police. He told her he ran into a bathroom with others to hide. He then texted her: "He's coming." "The next text said: 'He has us, and he's in here with us,'" she said. "That was the last conversation." (More mass shootings stories.)

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