Shooting at Tennessee Movie Theater, Suspect Killed By Police
The suspect was also armed with a hatchet, according to police.
Police were called to a movie theater outside of Nashville Wednesday in response to reports of a shooter, according to the Metro Nashville PD.
The call reporting a shooter was received by police at 1:15 p.m. Police, EMS and SWAT have responded to the scene. According to police, SWAT engaged with the shooter following the emergency call, resulting in a shootout. The suspect was killed in the exchange of gunfire.
The shooting occurred at the Carmike Hickory 8 theater in Antioch during a screening of Mad Max.
According to law enforcement, the suspect was armed with a hatchet in addition to a gun. He also had two backpacks with him. It's unclear what is contained in the bags. Police are investigating the bags with a hazardous materials team.
Brian Haas, public information for the Nashville Fire Department, said three patients (a man, 58, and two women) were treated for pepper spray exposure. The man was also treated was also treated for a "superficial wound" that "could have been caused by a hatchet." The injury was described further as "not much more than a bad bruise." No deaths, apart from the shooter, have been reported.
"We don't anticipate at this point transferring anyone to the hospital," the spokesperson said.
A Metro Nashville PD spokesperson said the gunman discharged pepper spray around theater. According to the spokesperson, when the SWAT team entered, the air "was thick" with pepper spray. The suspect, identified as a 51-year-old local white male, was wearing a surgical mask. After the SWAT team entered, the suspect escaped out the rear of the theater. Officers then engaged with him out back, killing him.
Suspect was wearing backpack on his chest and also had a second bag with him
"The only person who was shot was the suspect as he emerged out the rear door," the spokesperson said.
The Metro PD says the bomb squad will be detonating one of the shooter's backpacks because "they're not comfortable" with its contents. The spokesperson wouldn't elaborate on nature of the contents.
A witness who works at a nearby business told CNN she believes she encountered the shooter before the incident, identified by his two backpacks, and said he appeared middle-aged.
The Ford Ice Center and the Global Mall nearby have been placed on lockdown.
The shooting comes less than two weeks after another movie theater shooting in Lafayette, Louisiana.
This article was originally published by The Hollywood Reporter.