2 in Critical Condition After Navy Hospital Corpsman Opens Fire Near Fort Detrick

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Taped-off area near the scene of a shooting in Frederick, Md.
An official stands near a taped-off area near the scene of a shooting at a business park in Frederick, Md., Tuesday, April 6, 2021. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

A 38-year-old Navy hospital corpsman was killed by personnel at a Maryland military base Tuesday morning after he shot and wounded two people at a nearby business park. 

Police responded to reports of an active shooter at about 8:20 a.m. in Frederick, which is 50 miles northwest of Washington, D.C. Two men had been shot and were transported by helicopter to a Baltimore trauma center, where they remain in critical condition, Frederick Police Chief Jason Lando said. 

The shooter, confirmed by the Navy to be a hospital corpsman, then drove from the business park to nearby Fort Detrick, where Lando said he was shot and killed by personnel on base. 

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"There was only one shooter," Lando said. "The public is no longer at risk. ... No officers were injured, and there were no other injuries to bystanders other than the two victims." 

The police chief said law enforcement personnel are working to determine whether there was a relationship between the Navy corpsman and the two victims. Lando did not provide any information about the victims, and whether they were also Navy personnel. 

Navy officials said Tuesday that multiple sailors were involved in the shooting. 

"The U.S. Navy can confirm there was an active shooter incident at Fort Detrick, MD involving U.S. Navy Sailors," an official at the Pentagon said. "The shooter, a Navy Hospital Corpsman, is deceased. We will continue to update with additional details as the situation evolves." 

Lando said the shooter went into a business at the Riverside Technology Park. People began fleeing, he added, and it was unclear whether the shooting took place inside the business or outdoors. 

The shooter then traveled to Fort Detrick, which is about 10 minutes away by car, where he was shot and killed. Lando said life-saving aid was being provided to the suspect when Frederick law enforcement personnel arrived at the base.

"We were notified shortly thereafter that the shooter was reported dead," he said. 

Several agencies were involved in the response to the shooting, Lando added, including the Frederick County Sheriff's Department, Maryland State Police, the FBI, and Frederick County Fire and Rescue

This is at least the third military base shooting involving sailors since 2019. A terrorist opened fire at a naval air station in Pensacola, Florida, in December 2019, killing three and injuring eight others. Days earlier, a sailor shot and killed two and injured a third before taking his own life at Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard in Hawaii.

"It's terrible, it's unfortunate, it's very tragic," Lando said of Tuesday's shooting. "It's happening too frequently. Every time we turn on a TV, we're seeing something like this happen, and now it's happening in our backyard. No one wants to see this type of thing." 

Police are expected to provide another update on the shooting to the public Tuesday afternoon. 

-- Gina Harkins can be reached at gina.harkins@military.com. Follow her on Twitter @ginaaharkins

Related: Navy Investigation of Pensacola Shooting Points to 'Toxic' Command Climate as Factor

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