Goshen News, Goshen, IN

January 16, 2014

UPDATE: Three dead in Elkhart after shooting in Martins Super Market

Martin's officials comment on tragedy.


STAFF AND WIRE REPORTS

ELKHART — State police have released the ages of the two women killed by a gunman inside a northern Indiana grocery store.

State police Sgt. Trent Smith says those fatally shot Wednesday night at a Martin's Super Market in Elkhart were a 20-year-old store employee and a 44-year-old woman who is believed to have been a store customer.

Smith says the 22-year-old gunman was killed by two Elkhart police officers who confronted him inside the store.

He says investigators don't believe the gunman knew the victims.

Smith says the gunman used a semi-automatic handgun to shoot the women at sites about a dozen aisles apart.

Authorities haven't yet released the names of those killed. A news conference is scheduled for later today.

Indiana State Police said, at 10:07 p.m. Elkhart Police dispatch received a 911 phone call of a gunman in the Martin's Super Market located at 3900 E. Bristol St. on the northeast side of the city. The first two officers on the scene arrived within three minutes confronting the armed man, shooting and killing him. The 22-year-old male suspect died at the scene as a result of multiple gunshot wounds. The man was armed with a .40 caliber semi automatic handgun and a large hunting knife.



Officers on the scene soon discovered two female victims that had been shot and killed by the armed man. They were both pronounced dead at the scene. One 20 year old female was identified as an employee of Martin's and the other 44 year old woman is presumed to be a patron of the store at this time.



The names of the victims and the shooter will be released as next of kin are notified. The Elkhart City Police Department will release the names of the two officers at their discretion.



At this time police do not believe that the shooter knew any of the victims. The investigation is ongoing and as new information develops it will be distributed.

Statement from Martin's officials



Martin’s Super Markets located at 3900 E. Bristol St. in Elkhart will remain closed today after the tragic events of last night. “The entire Martin’s family is saddened by this tragedy,” says Rob Bartels, Martin’s President and chief executive officer. “We will be offering counseling services to employees today and for as long as necessary. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families involved and the entire community. Additionally, we would like to thank everyone in the community for all your thoughts and prayers,” Bartels said.

Martin’s has been and will continue to coordinate with police authorities as necessary. “We know that the quick response from Elkhart Police saved lives, and for that we will be forever grateful. We appreciate the professional way in which both the Elkhart and Indiana State Police have handled the situation,” Bartels said.



Martin’s Super Markets was founded in 1947 and currently has 21 stores in South Bend, Mishawaka, Granger, Elkhart, Goshen, Plymouth, Nappanee, Logansport and Warsaw, Indiana, and Niles, Stevensville and St. Joseph, Mich.