Gunman opens fire at Pennsylvania psychiatric hospital, killing 1

PITTSBURGH, Pennsylvania (BNO NEWS) — A gunman opened fire at a psychiatric hospital in Pennsylvania on Thursday afternoon, killing one person and wounding several others before he was shot dead by a campus police officer, local authorities said.

The unidentified shooter was carrying two semiautomatic handguns when he opened fire on the first floor of the Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) in Pittsburgh, the second-largest city in Pennsylvania. The shooting began at around 1:40 p.m. local time.

Police said the gunman killed one person and wounded six others before he was shot dead by a campus police officer in a hallway at the hospital. A seventh victim suffered an injury not related to gunfire, although other details were not immediately released.

Five of the injured remained hospitalized on late Thursday while two others had already been released. Of those still hospitalized, who were identified as three males and two females between the ages of 35 and 64, two underwent surgery. The hospital said a 64-year-old woman and a 49-year-old man remain in a serious condition.

“I expect all of these patients to survive and do well,” said Donald Yealy, chair of emergency medicine at UPMC. “As the busiest trauma center in the region, we prepare for this kind of multi-casualty situation.” The hospital said the care of patients was not compromised because of the shooting, and many staff members volunteered to work extra shifts.

Authorities did not immediately identify the gunman, although early reports about a second gunman were found to be false. “This was a tragic day, a sad day, a senseless day in many ways,” Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl said during a press conference on Thursday night.

Ravenstahl praised the response of police officers, saying their quick response saved lives. “There’s no doubt about it,” Ravenstahl said. “We can’t predict what would have happened if they hadn’t acted so quickly, but there’s no doubt their quick response saved lives.”

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