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LOUISVILLE, KY: the Old National Bank building in Louisville, Kentucky, on 10 April 2023. (Photo by Luke Sharrett/Getty Images)

Bank Employee Attacks Workplace in Kentucky

The latest U.S. mass killing occurred in downtown Louisville, Kentucky, on the morning of 10 April. An employee of Old National Bank entered his workplace and killed five coworkers before he was shot and killed at the scene by police.

The apparent gunman, 25-year-old Connor Sturgeon, livestreamed his attack, which also resulted in another eight people injured. FBI Louisville special agents responded to the shooting to assist local law enforcement.

The shooting occurred at around 8:30 a.m. at Old National Bank, which is near the downtown’s Waterfront Park and Louisville Slugger Field, a baseball stadium. Although the bank was not open to the public, staff were inside participating in a morning meeting. Minutes after the shooting began, police were on the scene.

“A man who fled the building during the shooting told WHAS-TV that the shooter opened fire with a long rifle in a conference room in the back of the building’s first floor,” the Associated Press reported.

Included among the dead was Thomas Elliott, 63, a good friend of Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear. Beshear described Elliott as “a confidant he said helped him build his legal and political careers,” The Washington Post reported. “…The shooting made Beshear at least the second governor in a matter of weeks to learn that a friend had been slain in a mass killing.”

The others killed were identified as Joshua Barrick, 40; Deana Eckert, 57; Juliana Farmer, 45; and James Tutt, 64. Two of the people injured were listed on late Monday as being in “critical condition.” One of those two is Officer Nickolas Wilt, who after being shot in the head had to undergo brain surgery. Three injured people were released, and another three were reported to have been treated for non-life-threatening injuries. Beshear noted that one of the people injured was another close friend.

Law enforcement have not yet identified a motive for the attack. However, Sturgeon “had been on the brink of getting fired, a law enforcement source familiar with the investigation said,” according to CNN. Sturgeon had been employed at the bank for nearly two years, prior to which he was an intern.

“Neighbors of Sturgeon, whose house was surrounded by heavily armed officers Monday, said in interviews that they had not interacted with him much, but that little about him stood out,” according to the Post.

Authorities noted that Sturgeon livestreamed the attack on Instagram. In a public statement, Instagram's parent company, Meta, said it had removed the footage of the attack, the AP reported.

An unrelated shooting in downtown Louisville occurred a few hours after the incident at the bank. The second shooting occurred at a community college only a few blocks away from Old National Bank, and the attack left one man dead and a woman injured.

Kentucky's governor is far from alone in his connection to victims of gun violence. On 11 April, KFF—a nonprofit focused on healthcare research—released the findings of a national poll that illustrated that the majority of Americans have dealt with gun violence in their personal lives. An estimated one in five people had a family member who was killed by a firearm; one in five people said they have been threatened with a gun; and one in six people said they personally witnessed a shooting, according to NPR.

Additionally, a March Pew Research Center report found that gun deaths among America’s children had risen 50 percent over the last two years. “While the majority of adult gun deaths are by suicide, children and teens killed by gunfire are more likely to die by homicide,” Axios reported.

So far in 2023, there have been 146 mass shootings in the United States, according to the Gun Violence Archive.