Video Game Massacre: Pro Gamer, 24, Shoots Two Dead and Injures Nine After Losing a Madden NFL Online Gaming Tournament in Florida
August 26, 2017
Horror caught on livestream: shooter used a laser-sighted gun to target other players before taking his own life.
- Four are dead and about 11 were injured in mass shooting in Florida on Sunday
- David Katz, 24, has been identified as the shooter who killed himself at scene
- Jacksonville Sheriff's Office confirmed white male gunman was among the dead
- Shooting broke out during the Madden NFL online gaming tournament
- Witnesses say the shooter was a pro gamer who had just lost in the tournament
- Horrifying livestream audio from tournament captured the screams of victims
- Shooter allegedly had laser gun-sight and shot up room before taking own life
- Federal agents raided a home thought to be the shooter's in South Baltimore
- Governor Rick Scott is en route and President Trump has offered any resources
Police have identified the suspect in a mass shooting at an online gaming tournament in Florida that was partially captured on a horrifying livestream.
David Katz, 24, killed himself and two others, and left 11 people injured in the chaotic shooting at the Jacksonville Landing complex in Jacksonville at around 1.34pm on Sunday, police said.
Nine of the non-fatal injuries were from gunshot wounds, and two were sustained while fleeing the chaos, Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams said.
Williams said that Katz is from Baltimore and had traveled to Jacksonville for the video gaming tournament. His car was seized by police near the scene.
Katz is known to have gone by the gamer monikers 'Ravenschamp' and 'Bread'.
An official close to the investigation said that the gunman killed himself with the semi-auto handgun used in the shooting, which had a laser sight.
Witnesses have said the shooter was a player who had just lost in the tournament.
On Sunday night, FBI and ATF agents raided a home linked to the shooter in the upscale Federal Hill neighborhood of South Baltimore.
The shooting broke out during the Madden 19 tournament at the Good Luck Have Fun video game room inside Chicago Pizza, a restaurant inside the shopping complex that sits on the north bank of the St John's River.
In a livestream of the tournament, one of the players is seen with a dot that appears to be a laser pointer dancing on his chest and neck seconds before shots and screams are heard, and the feed cuts out.
President Donald Trump has offered local officials any resources they need in responding to the shooting, according to Florida Governor Rick Scott, who was en route to the scene on Sunday evening.
One witness told CNN he saw the gunman shoot multiple people before killing himself and that it appeared he had a laser sight on the gun to help him target victims.
Horrifying livestream audio from the tournament captured the screams of players as the gunfire erupted while two young men were playing in the championship series.
The commentators could be heard going silent as the first gunshots were fired and people began screaming.
The stream then cut out and a message appeared saying 'controller disconnected'.
Witnesses said people trampled each other while fleeing the gunfire.
The tourney just got shot up. Im leavinng and never coming back— Drini Gjoka (@YoungDrini) August 26, 2018
I am literally so lucky. The bullet hit my thumb— Drini Gjoka (@YoungDrini) August 26, 2018
I will never take anything for granted ever again. Life can be cut short in a second— Drini Gjoka (@YoungDrini) August 26, 2018
Marquis Williams, 20, says he and his girlfriend, Taylor Poindexter, both from Chicago, were ordering pizza close by when shots erupted. He said Sunday that he didn't think it was gunfire at first.
Says Williams: 'Initially we thought it was a balloon popping, but there weren't any balloons in the room. Then we heard repeat shots and we took off running.'
Williams had participated earlier Sunday in the gaming tournament where authorities say a mass shooting claimed multiple fatalities. He says he got a view of the back of the shooter in a green shirt.
He describes people running in the panic to escape. He says it was then that he scuffed his leg and that Poindexter was treated at a hospital for a sprained ankle. They later returned, hoping to retrieve her cell phone, but the scene was cordoned off by authorities.
One of the gamers in the tournament, Drini Gjoka, revealed his horror after he was shot in the hand and ran for his life.
'The tourney just got shot up. I'm leaving and never coming back. I am literally so lucky. The bullet hit my thumb. Worst day of my life,' he tweeted.
'I will never take anything for granted ever again. Life can be cut short in a second.'
One gamer, Larry Legend, was shot three times in his chest and hand. His mother tweeted: 'My son was shot 3 times please keep him in your prayers'.
'@oLARRY2K was shot in chest and hand I was with him. I have his bag and phone. Plz retweet this to notify 2k community. He is at Florida Shands hospital. didn't look life threatening to me but injured bad. I love you bro,' fellow gamer BUCTILLIDIE tweeted.
Another witness, Ryan Alemon, told CNN he hid in the bathroom for about 10 minutes before fleeing the bar when he was certain the shooting was over.
'Everyone was running, they were dropping because they were getting shot. I heard yelling, I heard 'Help me, I'm shot',' he said.
'As I was going in the restroom, I stayed in there, and I just heard - there was just so many gunshots, at least 20 of them at the most.'
For several hours after the shooting, officers worked finding people hiding in the area and urged people to remain calm, as they warned others to stay far away from the Jacksonville Landing.
We are finding many people hiding in locked areas at The Landing. We ask you to stay calm, stay where you are hiding. SWAT is doing a methodical search inside The Landing. We will get to you. Please don’t come running out. #TheLandingMassShooting https://t.co/qBJvkaO7xT— Jax Sheriff's Office (@JSOPIO) August 26, 2018
Many hid in bathrooms of the Jacksonville Landing complex, trying to escape the carnage.
'We are finding many people hiding in locked areas at The Landing,' the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office tweeted.
'We ask you to stay calm, stay where you are hiding. SWAT is doing a methodical search inside The Landing.
'We will get to you. Please don't come running out.'
By about 4.30pm, SWAT teams had cleared the Jacksonville Landing of potential victims and witnesses.
Multiple emergency crews were spotted on the scene and police barricaded a three-block radius around the mall.
Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry urged residents to avoid downtown on Sunday evening to allow police operations to proceed.
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