A Columbus, Ohio, shooting has claimed the lives of three members of a family and injured another, and police shot and killed the suspect at the scene, The Columbus Dispatch is reporting.
The shooting took place at about 5:00 p.m. Monday evening. Witnesses say a man — later identified as 50-year-old Barry Kirk — barged into the home of the Anderson family and shot and killed three people, and injured a fourth. Police identified the dead as John E. Anderson II, 31, his wife, Christina Chaffin Anderson, 30, and their 7-year-old son, Landon Anderson. Twelve-year-old daughter Makyleigh Anderson was injured but is expected to survive the shooting.
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Neighbor Alphonso Carreker was outside smoking a cigarette when he heard gunfire.
“It was like, bam, bam bam. Bam, bam, bam. Bam, bam, bam. It was like 15 or 20 shots.”
When Columbus police responding to a 911 call arrived, Kirk had already shot the four victims and was running from the scene. His hands were up as he was fleeing, but then, according to Carreker, he turned towards the cops and reached for his waist. Three Columbus police officers opened fire on the suspect, striking and killing him. None of the police were injured in the shooting.
After the police shot and killed the suspect, injured daughter Makyleigh emerged from the house.
“She had blood all over her. Her hands were cherry red.”
Makyleigh was taken to Nationwide Children’s Hospital, where she was initially listed in critical condition. However, police later said she is expected to make a full recovery.
In a terrifying 911 call released to the Columbus Dispatch, Mrs. Anderson can be heard pleading for help after her husband had been shot and the gunman was still inside the home.
“My husband is shot. My husband is shot. Please come. Come now… Please get here. He’s in my house.”
The 911 dispatcher would later tell Columbus police that he or she heard gunfire during the call.
During the shooting, another person in the house — a friend of the family who sometimes stayed with the Andersons and was hiding in the basement — also called 911.
“There’s people in the house with guns. Can you hear the guns?”
Shooting suspect Barry Kirk was known to live a couple of houses down from the Andersons. Carreker said that as far as he knew, Kirk had no beef with his victims.
“In fact,” he said, “[Kirk] told me they were the best of friends.”
Mr. Anderson’s brother, John Lozier, also said that he was not aware of any issues between Kirk and Anderson.
As of this writing, Columbus police have not offered any possible motives for the shooting, although Lozier noted that Kirk had recently gone through some personal problems, including losing his job and his wife leaving him.
In 2009, according to ABC News, Kirk had a run-in with the law. Ohio State Highway Patrol records indicate that Kirk had gone to the Ohio governor’s office for help with an unemployment claim. When the employee didn’t help Kirk to his satisfaction, Kirk threatened to make a “big boom” or “begin shooting people.” He later pleaded guilty to telephone harassment.
Fortunately for 12-year-old Makyleigh, the only survivor of the Columbus shooting, she has family who are willing to take her in, says her uncle.
“She’ll be taken care of. She got grandparents, and uncles.”
As of this writing, funeral arrangements for the victims of the Columbus shooting have not been made public.
[Image via Shutterstock/Brian A Jackson]