1 killed, another injured in Washington grocery store shooting; suspect on the run, police say

Police in southeast Washington state are searching for a man they say opened fire inside a grocery store, killing one person and injuring another. 

The shooting unfolded around 11 a.m. inside a Fred Meyer store in Richland, Washington — about 30 miles north of the Oregon border and 200 miles southeast of Seattle. 

Police scanner radio chronicled officers’ efforts to clear the store throughout the afternoon, sweeping each aisle and helping both shoppers and workers escape, including a group that hid in the pharmacy area. Those inside the store were escorted to the parking lot. 

The suspect, who was armed with a handgun, fled the area after the incident, Richland police Commander Chris Lee said. Authorities said his motive was unknown and it wasn’t clear whether specific people were targeted, Lee said.

Police Monday afternoon said they’d identified the suspect but did not release his name. The suspect has had contact with law enforcement in the past, police said.

Lee said the suspect fled on foot or in a vehicle. 

This image from security camera video provided by the Richland, Wash., police shows a shooting suspect at a Fred Meyer store in Richland on Monday, Feb. 7, 2022. Police say one person was killed and another injured Monday morning in a shooting at the store.  Police say the suspect is believed to have fled the store after the shooting.

“If you see him, please do not try to approach him. Call 911 immediately,” Lee said, noting the suspect is considered armed and dangerous. 

The person wounded is a store employee who was taken to a hospital, was undergoing surgery and was listed in critical condition, Lee said. 

The suspect and the victim who died had an interaction before the shooting, according to store video footage seen by police. Police said they don’t know what the apparent conversation entailed and don’t know if the two people knew each other. The person who died was not a store employee, according to police.

Authorities released photos of the suspect, showing a man in a plaid, long-sleeved flannel shirt and vest pushing a grocery cart. He was wearing a dark-colored gaiter or scarf pulled over his nose, light-colored pants and athletic shoes.

Police and sheriff’s deputies from across the Tri-Cities area in Eastern Washington were called to help, and area schools were placed on lockdown.

Fred Meyer officials said in a statement on Twitter they were deeply saddened and cooperating with law enforcement.

“The entire Fred Meyer Family offers our thoughts, prayers, and support to all affected individuals and families during this difficult time, and we have initiated counseling services for our associates,” the statement said.

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