Cops: Man Asked for Transfer 40 Minutes Before Shooting

Gabriel DeWitt Wilson described as 'troubled employee' at Long Island supermarket
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 21, 2021 4:36 PM CDT
Alleged Supermarket Shooter Was 'Troubled Employee'
Emergency service personnel work at the scene of a shooting at a Stop & Shop supermarket, Tuesday, April 20, 2021, in West Hempstead, NY.   (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

The man accused of killing a manager and wounding two other workers at a Long Island supermarket Tuesday is a "troubled employee" who requested a transfer just 40 minutes before he opened fire, police say. Nassau County Police Det. Lt. Stephen Fitzpatrick says 31-year-old cart collector Gabriel DeWitt Wilson returned to the Shop & Stop in Hempstead with a gun after the brief and "uneventful" meeting about a transfer to the West Hempstead branch Tuesday morning, NBC reports. Fitzpatrick says the meeting was "not confrontational" and there was no indication that Wilson's transfer request would be denied.

Police say Wilson opened fire with a handgun in a manager's office, firing seven shots at five people and killing manager Ray Wishropp, 49. Wilson fled and was arrested around four hours later. Fitzpatrick says that in recent months, Wilson was "having unwanted advances toward females that worked there" and been brought into the management office several times over disputes with other workers. Police say Wilson has a long criminal record involving gun violence and was hospitalized after mental health crises in 2016 and 2019, reports WMET. Wilson, who was charged with murder and attempted murder Tuesday, was already charged with second-degree attempted murder and possession of a firearm in an "ongoing" case, police say. (Read more Long Island stories.)

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