A 'highly-skilled' gunman opened fire on a children's bowling league in a rampage that killed at least 22 people and wounded 60 in the Maine city of Lewiston. Residents of Lewiston and nearby Bowdoin have been advised to shelter in place as the suspect, Robert Card, remains at large. Public schools in Lewiston, Bowdoin, and Portland have closed as a precautionary measure.
Police have named Card, a previously sectioned Army reserve firearms instructor, as a person of interest. Survivors have recounted the horror of fleeing for their lives as the gunman indiscriminately fired shots with an AR-15-style rifle. Teenagers were among the injured victims.
Lewiston, a city of approximately 38,000 residents, is currently on lockdown as law enforcement agencies, both local and federal, intensify efforts to locate Card. The suspect, who was sectioned due to mental health issues earlier this year, has a history of making threats and exhibiting concerning behaviors.
Eyewitnesses describe the chaotic scene as people ran for safety, seeking refuge in nearby establishments. The shooting spree began at a bowling alley and continued at a bar several miles away. Card's car has been found abandoned in Lisbon, prompting an expansion of the shelter-in-place advisory to include the town of Bowdoin, where the suspect is from.
The Central Maine Medical Center is under lockdown, with armed police officers stationed at every entrance. Authorities have opened a reunification center at Auburn Middle School to assist families and friends in locating their loved ones.
President Joe Biden has been informed of the incident and has pledged federal assistance. The FBI is ready to provide resources, including evidence response and tactical support.
The tragedy in Lewiston marks the deadliest mass shooting of the year in the United States. Maine, known for its relatively lax gun laws, has a high level of gun ownership but low rates of fatal shootings. The investigation into the motive behind the attack is ongoing.