OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — A gunman opened fire outside of a Jewish community center on Sunday, killing a doctor and his teenage grandson before heading to a Jewish retirement community a few blocks away and killing someone else, authorities said.
Police arrested the suspected assailant in an elementary school parking lot shortly after the attacks in the Kansas City suburb of Overland Park.
At a news conference, the city's police chief, John Douglass, said the suspect is in his 70s, wasn't from Kansas and wasn't known to area law enforcement. He also said there was no indication that the suspect knew the victims.
Douglass declined to release the names of the victims, citing the need to notify their loved ones first. But the family of the first two people who were shot released a statement later Sunday identifying them as Dr. William Lewis Corporon and his 14-year-old grandson, Reat Griffin Underwood. They were both Christian, and the family thanked members of their church congregation, among other people, for their support.
Douglass said the suspect made several statements to police, "but it's too early to tell you what he may or may not have said." He also said it was too early in the investigation to determine whether there was an anti-Semitic motive for the attacks or if they will be investigated as hate crimes. The Jewish festival of Passover begins today.
Douglass said the suspect first opened fire in the parking lot behind the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City. Corporon died at the scene and his grandson later died at the hospital. The chief said the suspect then drove to the nearby retirement community, Village Shalom, where he shot and killed a woman or girl. The gunman also shot at two other people during the attacks, but missed them, Douglass said.