The Kentucky Bank shooter’s family speak out as footage shows the police’s response

Police officers approach mass shooting suspect lying on floor of Old National Bank in downtown Louisville - Louisville Metro Police Department

Police officers approach mass shooting suspect lying on floor of Old National Bank in downtown Louisville – Louisville Metro Police Department

The parents of the Kentucky bank gunman have expressed their sorrow at the “horror” their son has caused their community as they praised police who risked their lives to stop the gunman from killing more of his colleagues.

Dramatic Videosreleased by the Louisville Metro Police Department, offer a rare perspective of the efforts of the emergency services who were called to the bank where Connor Sturgeon live broadcast the massacre.

Four people were killed in the Old National Bank as Sturgeon charged the branch and opened fire with an AR-15 style assault rifle. The shooter himself died, taking the toll of five.

Connor Sturgeon - LinkedIn

Connor Sturgeon – LinkedIn

Sturgeon, a 25-year-old finance graduate, had worked at the bank for more than a year but recently learned he could lose his job.

He had no contact with Louisville police before Monday, when he began a targeted killing spree after first leaving a note at the home he shared with a friend he met at university.

Sturgeon also sent a text message that read “I love you” to family members before opening fire, a lawyer for his parents told US media.

“Fear and Loathing”

His parents said in a statement Wednesday morning that their son received support for mental health issues.

“No words can express our sadness, fear and horror at the unimaginable harm our son Connor has caused to innocent people, their families and the entire Louisville community,” a statement sent to local news outlet WDRB said .

“We mourn her loss and that of our son Connor. We pray for all traumatized by his senseless acts of violence and are deeply grateful for the courage and heroism of the Louisville Metropolitan Police Department.”

Connor Sturgeon - Louisville Metro Police Department

Connor Sturgeon – Louisville Metro Police Department

The family said they “actively addressed” Sturgeon’s “mental health challenges” but “there were never any warning signs or indications that he was capable of this shocking act.”

“While we have many unanswered questions, we will continue to work fully with law enforcement and do what we can to help everyone understand why and how this happened,” they said.

Footage filmed by a bystander and cameras on officers’ lapels shows the chaotic scenes faced by police when they were called to the bank around 8.30am Monday.

Officer shot in the head

One of the officers in the video, an inexperienced police officer, was shot in the head minutes after arriving at the scene. His partner was grazed by a bullet and sought cover while still trying to take out the shooter.

Sturgeon had already shot people inside and set up an ambush position to attack officers, police said.

The front doors were glass and elevated from the pavement, and because of the reflection, officers couldn’t see the gunman inside, police said. But Sturgeon could see her.

Video shows Officer Cory Galloway retrieving a rifle from the trunk of the squad car.

“Cover for me,” he says.

Galloway was training rookie officer Nickolas Wilt, who had graduated from the police academy just 10 days earlier.

The pair walked up the stairs to the bank’s entrance, where Wilt was shot in the head. Galloway was grazed in the shoulder, police said. His body cam showed him falling and then taking cover behind a concrete planter at the base of the stairs leading to the building.

“I think he’s down!”

“The shooter was targeting these officers,” he says in the video recording. “We have to go up there. I don’t know where he is, the glass is blocking him.”

Video taken by a passerby across the street, which police also released Tuesday, showed him darting back and forth from one side of the planter to the other, trying to fire at the gunman.

“I think I got him! I think he’s down!” he yells after shooting the gunman dead. “Suspects down! Get the officer!”

Video then shows Galloway approaching the suspect, who was lying on the floor in the lobby next to a long rifle.

According to the University of Louisville Hospital’s chief medical officer, Dr. Jason Smith, Officer Wilt remained in critical but stable condition as of Tuesday.

Two of the four injured, who were still hospitalized, had injuries that weren’t life-threatening, Dr. Smith.
Louisville Mayor Craig Greenberg said it was critical to release the footage because “transparency is important — even more so in a time of crisis.”

“We are all shocked”

The shooting, the 15th mass murder in the United States this year, came just two weeks after a former student killed three children and three adults at a Christian elementary school in Nashville, Tennessee.

In Louisville, five employees of the Old National Bank were killed: Joshua Barrick, 40, a senior vice president; Tommy Elliott, 63, also senior vice president; Jim Tutt Jr, 64, a commercial real estate executive; Juliana Farmer, 45, credit analyst; and Deana Eckert, 57, a senior administrator.

“We’re all shattered by it and we’re scared and angry and a lot of other things, too,” Greenberg said. “It’s important that we come together as a community to process this tragedy in particular, but not just this tragedy, because the reality is that we’ve already lost 40 people to gun violence this year in Louisville.”

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