By Jueseppi B.
The President Delivers a Statement About the Shooting at Fort Hood
08:43 PM EDT
Tonight, the President delivered remarks about the ongoing situation in Fort Hood.
Obama: We will get to the bottom of Fort Hood shooting
Published on Apr 2, 2014
President Obama gives a statement on the shooting at Fort Hood in Texas.
Remarks by the President on the Shooting at Fort Hood
Chicago Cut Steakhouse Chicago, Illinois
6:46 P.M. CDT
THE PRESIDENT: Hello, everybody. I just got off the phone with Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Sandy Winnefeld to get the latest report on the situation in Fort Hood. Obviously we’re following it closely. The situation is fluid right now. But my national security team is in close contact with not just the Defense Department but the FBI. They are working with folks on the ground to determine exactly what happened to make sure that everybody is secure. And I want to just assure all of us that we’re going to get to the bottom of exactly what happened.
Any shooting is troubling. Obviously this reopens the pain of what happened at Fort Hood five years ago. We know these families. We know their incredible service to our country and the sacrifices that they make. Obviously our thoughts and prayers were — are with the entire community. And we are going to do everything we can to make sure that the community at Fort Hood has what it needs to deal with the current situation, but also any potential aftermath.
We’re heartbroken that something like this might have happened again. And I don’t want to comment on the facts until I know exactly what has happened, but for now, I would just hope that everybody across the country is keeping the families and the community at Fort Hood in our thoughts and in our prayers. The folks there have sacrificed so much on behalf of our freedom. Many of the people there have been on multiple tours in Iraq and Afghanistan. They serve with valor; they serve with distinction. And when they’re at their home base they need to feel safe. We don’t yet know what happened tonight, but obviously that sense of safety has been broken once again. And we’re going to have to find out exactly what happened.
The Pentagon will undoubtedly have further briefings for you as we get more details [about what happened.]
Update: 04/02/2014 9:00PM
The shooter, identified as 34-year-old soldier Ivan Lopez, died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, the Justice Department said.
Six of the victims were transported to Scott & White Hospital with gunshot wounds. “Their conditions range from quite stable to quite critically injured,” Glen Couchman, Scott & White’s chief medical officer, said. Couchman said the hospital was not currently in need of blood donations from individuals.
Emergency crews, FBI and SWAT teams were called in to the base following the shooting, which occurred at approximately 4:30 p.m. at a medical support building on the sprawling base. Soldiers and area residents were ordered to shelter in place as police pursued reports of a possible second shooter. The lockdown was lifted several hours later.
Four dead, 14 injured at Ft. Hood, Texas congressman says
Authorities are investigating a shooting at Ft. Hood that left four people dead and 14 others injured, according to a Texas congressman. The sprawling military base was on lockdown as investigators tried to determine whether there was a second gunman.
Officials at Ft. Hood said they have received an initial report that a shooter at the base was dead. But Michael McCaul (R-Texas), chairman of the Homeland Security Committee, said the shooter was among four who are dead. In an interview with CNN, he described the shooting as “soldier on soldier” and said terrorism was not suspected.
Ft. Hood’s Directorate of Emergency Services said that injured personnel were being transported to Carl R. Darnall Medical Center and other hospitals. Numerous law enforcement agencies are in support and on the scene.
The base said in a statement that its directorate of emergency services “has an initial report that a shooter is dead, but this is unconfirmed.”
It added: “the number of injured are not confirmed at this time.”
The base issued a shelter in place order for all personnel on post.
“There has been a shooting at Fort Hood and injuries are reported. Emergency crews are on the scene. No further details are known at this time,” the base said in a statement.
The base has been put on lockdown and police were securing its perimeter, police and military officials said.
“We are going to get to the bottom of exactly what happened,” Obama told reporters in Chicago, where he is traveling for Democratic fundraisers.
Obama said his national security team was in close contact with the Defense Department and the FBI to determine what occurred and ensure that everyone was secure.
“We’re heartbroken that something like this might have happened again,” Obama said.
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel on Wednesday called the incident a “terrible tragedy.”
“We know there are casualties, both people killed and injured,” Hagel told a news conference in Honolulu, where he was meeting with Asian defense ministers.
“We don’t have all the facts yet. We will get those. It’s still under investigation,” he added.
Local news reports said there may be two suspected shooters, while CNN reported that one shooter was believed to be dead, citing a U.S. official.
At about 5:30 p.m. Chicago time, a White House spokesman said President Obama had been told about the Fort Hood incident.”The President has been informed of reports of a shooting at Fort Hood. He’ll continue to receive updates on the situation throughout the evening,” principal deputy press secretary Josh Earnest said, according to a White House pool report.
Authorities advised those on the post to stay away from windows and to keep doors closed and locked.
Family members gathered near the main gate of the sprawling military base as a stream of police cars approached. Service members throughout the base were not permitted to leave their offices and quarters, and those outdoors were immediately ushered inside.
Spc. Cody Bishop, 28, told the Los Angeles Times his company of about 140 soldiers was in formation on a training exercise when the order came to shelter in place.
“We were standing in formation. They suddenly called everybody inside. They said stay inside. You can’t even go outside.”
Bishop said soldiers immediately gathered around television sets to try to learn what was going on. “We’ve got four different news channels on and getting four different reports,” he said.
As best he could tell, the shooting occurred about seven miles away from where he was, Bishop said.
He texted his wife, with whom he lives off base with his son, that he was OK.
Central Texas College, which has a Fort Hood campus, ordered an immediate evacuation of all students and staff, and canceled all classes.
In November 2009, a U.S. Army major shot and killed 13 people and wounded more than 30 others during a shooting spree.
In September, a gunman opened fire at the Washington Navy Yard, killing 12 and wounding 4 before being slain by police. Last month, a civilian shot dead a sailor aboard a ship at a U.S. Navy base in Norfolk, Va.