Maine shooting suspect Robert Card found dead of self-inflicted gunshot wound, Gov. Mills confirms
At a news conference Friday night, Maine Gov. Janet Mills confirmed Maine mass shooting suspect Robert Card , believed to have killed 18 people and injured 13, was found dead of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound on Friday night.
“Robert Card is dead,” Gov. Mills said. “Robert Card is no longer a threat to anyone.”
She thanked local, county and state law enforcement for working tirelessly over the past few days and nights. Mills also noted that while his death may not hold solace for many, she hopes it allows people to heal.
Officials say the body was found at 7:45 p.m. ET Friday along a river in Lisbon Falls, in the town of Lisbon, Maine. Law enforcement officials tell reporters that Card was discovered at a recycling center where the 40-year-old U.S. Army reservist had worked.
Wednesday’s mass shooting unfolded in two locations: bowling alley Just-In-Time Recreation where a children’s league was taking place and Schemengees Bar & Grille restaurant, officials said.
All 18 names of those killed have been released by authorities.
The victims at the bowling alley include youth bowling coach and his wife, a father and 14-year-old son, as well as a bowling alley manager. Officials say four of the 18 victims were Deaf.
At a news conference Friday, Maine Department of Public Safety Commissioner Michael Sauschuck said the shelter-in-place order was rescinded, but hunting was banned in the cities of Lewiston, Lisbon, Bowdoin and Monmouth.
Sauschuck said those four towns were the search area for the suspect and businesses could choose to be open or closed in those towns.
Residents were urged to remain vigilant.
Lewiston residents emerged from the shelter-in-place order to grieve and lift up their community.
“People mourn in different ways … for me, I want to be here doing something in my community, trying to uplift everybody,” resident Alex McMahon told ABC News after he hung up a “Lewiston Strong” sign near the bowling alley.
McMahon said he knows one of the 18 people killed in Wednesday’s mass shooting.
“A lot of people knew people that were affected,” he said. “One of our regular customers was one of the men that died a hero trying to take out the gunman.”
He said he wants to help the community heal, adding, “We want to heal with unity and strength.”
President Joe Biden was briefed Friday afternoon on the latest information surrounding the Maine mass shooting investigation and manhunt, according to the White House.
Over 200 FBI personnel are in Maine to help the victims and contribute to the search, FBI Director Christopher Wray told Biden.
On Friday morning, Maine officials held a press conference, in which they said officials were processing over 500 leads and tips.
They also explained the process of their search, and said they would be putting divers in a nearby body of water to look for Card.
Authorities surrounded a Maine home on Thursday in their search for Card, a U.S. Army reservist.
A convoy of armored police vehicles lined the road near a home in Bowdoin, around 7 p.m. ET.
“Robert Card, you’re under arrest. Come out now,” officers yelled through a megaphone. “Drop everything and come outside…If anyone is in the residence, walk outside and walk to the front of the driveway.”
Shannon Moss, a spokeswoman for the Maine State Police, said in a statement officers were conducting a search warrant.
“It is unknown whether Robert Card is in any of the homes law enforcement will search. Law enforcement officials are simply doing their due diligence by tracking down every lead in an effort to locate and apprehend Card,” she said.
A note that was found inside Card’s home earlier in the afternoon is being described as a suicide note addressed to the suspect’s son, law enforcement sources with knowledge of the investigation told reporters.
The sources said the note does not provide information that indicates a motive for the mass shooting.
A law enforcement source with direct knowledge told ABC News that Card had affiliations with the two locations he allegedly targeted.
An ex-girlfriend is connected to one of the locations. According to the source, “We don’t think this was completely random.”
The suspect also appears to have been fairly thoughtful about eluding police. He left behind a cellphone that authorities have recovered apparently suspecting it could be tracked.
Canadian Border Services Agency issued an “armed and dangerous” alert to its officers stationed along the Canada-U.S. border Thursday, warning them to be on the lookout for the Maine shooting suspect.
Authorities say Card has a history of military services, is a firearms instructor and was treated at a mental-health facility over the summer after allegedly saying that he was hearing voices.
The Army has confirmed that Card has been an Army Reservist since December 2002. His current rank is as a sergeant first class and his job is a petroleum supply specialist.
“I think those are all valid questions and certainly questions that we are looking into now, but not questions that we can answer today,” Sauschuck said.
The first shooting occurred at Just-In-Time Recreation — a bowling alley formerly known as Sparetime — around 7 p.m. Wednesday.
The second shooting scene was at a local bar and restaurant about 4 miles from the bowling alley.
Police said they found a white Subaru that is believed to be owned by Card. The car was seen with the door open and lights on.
Authorities have also released surveillance images showing the gunman at one of the shooting locations.
“It looks like, to me, an AR15 or some version of it,” said Brad Garrett. “Looks like to me he has some kind of extended magazine. Some of which you can shoot 25-30 rounds on a standard magazine.”
“Far too many Americans have now had a family member killed or injured as a result of gun violence. That is not normal, and we cannot accept it,” Biden said.
He said, while the nation has made progress on gun reform with “the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, the two dozen executive actions I’ve taken, and the establishment of the first-ever White House Office of Gun Violence Prevention, it’s simply not enough.”
Biden said he’s urging Republicans in Congress to “work with us to pass a bill banning assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, to enact universal background checks, to require safe storage of guns, and end immunity from liability for gun manufacturers.”
“This is the very least we owe every American who will now bear the scars — physical and mental — of this latest attack,” he said.