GREEN BAY, Wisconsin — A gunman killed two people at a Wisconsin casino restaurant and seriously wounded a third before he was killed by police late Saturday, in what authorities said appeared to be a targeted attack.
Brown County Sheriff’s Lt. Kevin Pawlak said investigators believe the gunman was seeking a specific person he was angry at.
“He was targeting a specific victim who was not there, but he decided to still shoot some of the victim’s friends or co-workers, it appears,” Pawlak said. “Whether or not they all worked there, we’re still working on.”
Neither the gunman nor the shooting victims were immediately identified. The wounded person was being treated at a Milwaukee hospital.
The attack happened around 7:30 p.m. at the Oneida Casino, operated by the Oneida Nation tribe on the western side of Green Bay near Austin Straubel Airport, with the casino tweeting that an active shooter was on the scene.
Pawlak said authorities called for a “tactical alert” after receiving the report of an active shooter. That “brings every agency from around the area to the casino,” he said of the large law enforcement presence.
Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul later tweeted shortly before 10 p.m. that the scene was “contained,” adding “There is no longer a threat to the community.”
Jawad Yatim, a witness, said he saw the shootings of two of the victims.
“I know for sure two, because it happened right next to us, literally right next to us,” Yatim said. “But he was shooting pretty aggressively in the building, so I wouldn’t doubt him hitting other people.”
Yatim said the shooting began in the Duck Creek restaurant in the casino.
“We got the hell out of there, thank God we’re OK, but obviously we wish the best for everybody who’s been shot,” he said.
Other witnesses described the scene as chaos, hearing gunshots and seeing people “running for their dear lives.”
“At first, we didn’t really know what to expect. Then once we seen the cop running in there with an AR-15, we knew that this is getting pretty serious,” witness Dylan Luehring of Mayville, Wisconsin, told CNN affiliate WLUK. “Once we heard the shots, we knew this is no joke anymore.”
“Pretty thankful we could get out of there, and all of us are safe,” Luehring said.
Adam Olig, also of Mayville, told the station the scene was chaotic.
“Seen people that were a lot closer. There were people running all over the place, running for their dear lives,” Olig said.
“It was chaos all over. People scattering in all directions. It was just crazy. Just crazy,” Luehring added.
Casinogoer Max Westphal said he was standing outside after being evacuated for what he thought was a minor issue.
“All of a sudden we hear a massive flurry of gunshots — 20 to 30 gunshots for sure,” Westphal told WBAY-TV. “We took off running towards the highway … There had to have been 50 cop cars that came by on the highway. It was honestly insane.”
Gov. Tony Evers issued a statement late Saturday saying he was “devastated” to hear about the shooting.
“Our hearts, thoughts, and support go out to the Oneida Nation, the Ashwaubenon and Green Bay communities, and all those affected by this tragedy.”