End of the hunt The Man in Maine: the alleged author of one of the worst killings in recent years in the United States (18 deaths) was found died Friday evening after having probably committed suicide. with a weapon fire.
“He is dead (…) Maine State Police have located the body,” Maine Governor Janet Mills said during a press conference late Friday evening, marking the end of two days of anxiety and confinement for residents of the small town of Lewiston.
Robert Card, 40 years old and an army reservist, appears to have committed suicide with a gun, according to Michael Sauschuck, official of Maine Public Safety.
Authorities said they were unable to say when the suspect ended his life.
Wednesday evening, armed with a semi-automatic rifle, this man opened fire in a bowling alley in Lewinston, then around ten minutes later, in a bar-restaurant in this town of 36,000 inhabitants, killing 18 people and leaving 13 injured.
The body of Robert Card was found at 7:45 p.m. (11:45 p.m. GMT) near a river in Lisbon Falls, about twenty minutes from the town of Lewiston where the killing took place. His car was found nearby.
A police blockade near the Schemengees bar in Lewiston, Maine (northeast United States), October 27, 2023 © AFP – ANGELA WEISS
In the evening in Lisbon Falls, roads leading to the Androscoggin River were blocked by police, according to an AFP journalist.
“Tonight, the people of Maine can breathe a sigh of relief,” reacted on X (formerly Twitter) Maine Senator Susan Collins, who said she had been warned by President Joe Biden “that the author of these attacks abominable in Lewiston had been found.”
The United States experienced “two tragic days”, declared American President Joe Biden in a statement. “I will continue to do everything in my power to end this epidemic of gun violence. The community of Lewiston – and all Americans – deserve nothing less,” he added.
At the end of the afternoon and while the suspect had still not been located, the local authorities announced the lifting of the confinement of the area, while warning that the situation remained “dangerous”, and calling on residents to remain “vigilant”.
– Heavy toll –
Seven people lost their lives in the bowling alley, eight in the bar-restaurant and three injured people died in hospital.
Main suspect in Maine shooting, Robert Card, in photo released by Lewinston police © Lewiston Maine Police Department – –
The victims range in age from 14 to 76 years old. Among them, a father and his son aged 44 and 14, and a couple aged 73 and 76.
An education center for the deaf and hard of hearing, located on a small island 45 minutes by car south of Lewiston, was particularly struck by the tragedy: among those killed at the “Schemengees bar and Grille” bar-restaurant, four men were links with the school, as former students, educators or parents, explained to AFP the director of the establishment, Karen Hopkins.
These four friends met on Wednesday evening to play cornhole, a typically American game of skill, she said.
Photos, names and ages of the 18 people killed in the massacre in Maine, October 25, 2023, released with the agreement of the families by the Maine State Police © Maine State Font – –
Wednesday's killing is the worst in the United States since that of the Uvalde school in Texas, where a shooter killed 19 children and two teachers in May 2022.
Denouncing a “tragic and “insane”, President Joe Biden asked Congress on Thursday to adopt “a ban on assault weapons” – yet another call of its kind by the Democrat, despite a majority not found for decades for such a change in legislation.
“Americans should not have to live like this,” he stressed Friday evening in a press release, referring to “two dramatic days”.
The country is paying a very heavy price for the spread of firearms on its territory and the ease with which Americans have access to them. The United States has more individual weapons than people.
A store and gas station closed in Lewiston, Maine, Thursday October 26, 2023 © AFP – Joseph Prezioso
Excluding suicides, more than 15,000 people have died in gun violence fire since the beginning of the year in the country, according to the association Gun Violence Archive (GVA).
Maine is one of the states with the lowest homicide rate per capita, and the 18 deaths on Wednesday are higher, according to the Everytown association, than the annual average of firearm homicides in the State.
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