Walmart employee in Chesapeake, Virginia, kills 6 with pistol, police say

The Virginia shooting comes three days after a shooting at a gay nightclub in Colorado Springs left five dead

A mass shooting at a Walmart in Chesapeake, Virginia, on Tuesday night that left six people dead was carried out by one of the store's employees before he took his own life by turning the gun on himself, the Chesapeake Police Department says.

Chesapeake Police Chief Mark Solesky told reporters Wednesday morning that the male employee used a pistol in the attack.

Police believe following a search by a SWAT team at the individual’s home there is "no risk to the public at this time," Solesky added.

The employee has not been identified, as police say they have yet to contact his next of kin. Officials say he was not familiar to law enforcement prior to the shooting. He died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, police say.

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Law enforcement work the scene the day after a mass shooting at a Walmart in Chesapeake, Virginia. The store was busy just before the shooting Tuesday night with people stocking up ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday.

Law enforcement work the scene the day after a mass shooting at a Walmart in Chesapeake, Virginia. The store was busy just before the shooting Tuesday night with people stocking up ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

"The investigation is still ongoing," Solesky said. "We will be processing that scene for days."

The comments from the police chief come after a video emerged of an employee claiming a store manager carried out the mass shooting.

Kevin Harper, a Walmart employee who managed to flee the store, said in a video that "we lost a few of our associates."

"I just left out of the break room, the manager comes in there and started capping people up in there. Started shooting, bro," Harper said.

Employee Briana Tyler said that workers had gathered in the store’s break room as they typically did ahead of their shifts.

"I looked up, and my manager just opened the door and he just opened fire," she told ABC’s "Good Morning America," adding that "multiple people" dropped to the floor.

"He didn’t say a word, he didn’t say anything at all," she said.

Law enforcement, including the FBI, work the scene of a mass shooting at a Walmart in Chesapeake, Virginia, on Tuesday.

Law enforcement, including the FBI, work the scene of a mass shooting at a Walmart in Chesapeake, Virginia, on Tuesday. (AP/Alex Brandon)

Chesapeake police said earlier they responded to an "active shooter" call at the store located along Battlefield Blvd. at approximately 10:12 p.m. When officers arrived, they coordinated with a tactical team to enter the store, where they found multiple bodies, said Chesapeake Police spokesman Leo Kosinski. 

"Three individuals, including the shooter, were located deceased in the break room of the store. One victim was located deceased toward the front of the store. Three other victims were transported to local hospitals for further treatment, but succumbed to their injuries," the city said in a tweet Wednesday.

"At least six additional victims were transported to local hospitals for further medical treatment. One of these individuals is currently in critical condition," the city added.

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Walmart, Inc. said it was "shocked" by the shooting and that it was cooperating with law enforcement efforts. 

President Biden called the shooting "senseless" and in a statement called for further gun reform.

"Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, one of our most cherished holidays that brings us together as Americans and as families, when we hug our loved ones and count our blessings," Biden said. "But because of yet another horrific and senseless act of violence, there are now even more tables across the country that will have empty seats this Thanksgiving. There are now more families who know the worst kind of loss and pain imaginable."

"This year, I signed the most significant gun reform in a generation, but that is not nearly enough," he added. "We must take greater action."

Several state and national lawmakers also addressed the shooting. 

Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., said he was "sickened" and urged residents not to travel near the area.

"Sickened by reports of yet another mass shooting, this time at a Walmart in Chesapeake. I’ll be monitoring developments closely," Warner tweeted.

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He added, "In the meantime, I urge all those in the community to listen to guidance from local law enforcement and stay away from the scene."

Rep. Elaine Luria, D-Va., tweeted, "Enough is enough."

"Praying for the victims, their families and colleagues, and the Chesapeake community tonight," she added.

Rep. Bobby Scott, D-Va., called the shooting "yet another incident of senseless gun violence."

"My thoughts are with the victims and their loved ones," he added.

Virginia state Sen. Louise Lucas, who serves as the President Pro tempore, echoed these sentiments in a statement calling for an end to gun violence.

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"I am absolutely heartbroken that America’s latest mass shooting took place in a Walmart in my district in Chesapeake, Virginia, tonight. I will not rest until we find the solutions to end this gun violence epidemic in our country that has taken so many lives," Lucas said.

The Virginia shooting comes a mere three days after a shooting at a gay nightclub in Colorado Springs, Colorado, left five dead and 17 wounded.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.