Celebrities post their condolences to the families and friends of those killed or wounded at the Lafayette movie theater. E!, July 23, 2015 reported that the celebrity list included Donald Trump, Dorinda Medley, Willie Garson and Sadie Robertson. One of the stars of the movie showing at the time of the shooting, Amy Schumer,tweeted “My heart is broken and all my thoughts and prayers are with everyone in Louisiana.” At the Grand Theatre in Lafayette, La., three people, including the gunman were shot and killed. Nine others were wounded. What was to be a nice night at the movies, to watch a screening of “Trainwreck,” ended in tragedy. At least 100 people were there to see that movie, when suddenly a man pulled out a gun and started shooting.
Col. Michael Edmonson of the Louisiana State Police said the gunman was a 58-year old white male. The call came through just before 8 p.m. to report someone was shooting at the Grand 16 Lafayette located at 3141 Johnston St. The police arrived while shots were still being fired. They entered to find the gunman had shot and killed himself along with two other people. Police say they know the identity of the man, but are not releasing that information because they don’t want to compromise the investigation. Jalen Farnell was in the next theater when the shots rang out. He said at first, he thought it was from the movie. Then an alarm sounded and people were told to evacuate the building over a loud speaker. People injured in the shooting were listed from critical to non-life threatening. According to police, the area was evacuated when they discovered some suspicious items in a car. A bomb squad was called to the scene. No confirmation on what the items in the car was other than they looked suspicious. Police dogs also indicated that there was something in that car, too. It is believed that the gunman acted alone and so far, there are no known motives.
Governor Jindal arrived at the scene. He asked people to pray for everyone affected by this tragedy. He told about two teachers who attended the movie together. When the man started firing, the one teacher jumped on the lap of the other teacher, taking a bullet that would have hit the other teacher in the head. That same teacher who was shot, was able to pull the fire alarm to save other lives.
Almost three years ago to the day, another gunman open fired during a screening of “The Dark Knight Rises.” On July 19, 2012, in the Aurora, Colorado theater, James Holmes used an AR 15 rifle, a 12-gauge shotgun, and at least one 40-caliber handgun. He killed 12 people and injured 70 others. He was arrested outside the theater approximately seven minutes after someone called 911 later.
Our thoughts and prayers go out for the family and friends and all those affected by the actions of this tragedy.