Chattanooga, Tennessee was the scene of an active shooter earlier today. Two locations were hit, leaving four U.S. Marines dead and one police officer injured. The extent of the officer’s injury is unknown at this time. According to news reports, multiple gun shots were fired at a military recruitment center in a strip mall and then shots were fired at a U.S. Navy Reserve center located approximately eight miles away.
While the motive for the shootings is not yet known, U.S. Attorney Bill Killian stated that law enforcement is treating the investigation as an act of “domestic terrorism.” Multiple eye witnesses saw the incidents, stating that they saw a man spray the recruitment center with bullets. One witness believes he heard between 30 and 40 shots fired.
It is also believed that the shooter was killed in the incident. However it is not yet known if he died from a self-inflicted injury or responsive fire from victims.
Given the nature of the targets, the range of possibilities are endless. As we have seen in the past, the motivations of mass shooters who target military personnel and military installations have ranged from lone wolf terrorist sympathizers, like the Fort Hood Shooter, to acts of domestic violence, and straight up mental illness.
Undoubtedly, the FBI Terrorism Task Force is hard at work figuring out who is involved, what happened, and what their motivation is. With a dead shooter, you can rest assured they have acquired an identification and are actively tearing his home apart looking for evidence.
We will keep you posted as this case develops…