Ashwaubenon, Wisconsin – Saturday’s shooting in a Wisconsin casino killed three people including the gunman and seriously injured one person, police said early Sunday.
Law enforcement authorities responded at around 7:30 p.m. Saturday to reports of a Duck Creek restaurant shooting inside the Oneida Casino / Radisson Hotel & Conference Center, Brown County Police Office said.
Lt. Kevin Pawlack told a news conference shortly after midnight that the police shot the gunman after he shot three other people in or near the restaurant.
Pawlack said the gunman went to the restaurant, but the employee who targeted him was not present. Sharif’s office said that the gunman shot some other workers, two of whom died. The gunman was killed outside the restaurant by law enforcement officials.
The Brown County Sheriff’s Office and the Oneida Police Department are investigating the murders, and the Criminal Investigation Division of the Wisconsin Department of Justice is investigating the gunman’s killing.
The officers who had responded to the scene treated it as an active shooting event. The information received by the dispatch center indicated that several bullets were fired and many casualties occurred.
Police said current information indicated the suspect had links to Oneida casino from an employment status.
Police said the situation was contained and there was no immediate threat.
Governor Tony Evers expressed his support for the Oneida nation and surrounding communities.
“Cathy and I were devastated to hear the news of the shooting at the Oneida Casino complex tonight. Our hearts, thoughts and support go to the Oneida Nation, Ashwaubenon and Green Bay communities, and all of those affected by this tragedy,” Evers said in a statement.
“While we await more information, we hope and pray that the injured will recover and we are grateful to the first responders who responded quickly to the situation,” the governor said.
Oneida Nation tweeted late Saturday, West Mason Casino, Travel Center and Packerland casinos will open at 8am on Sunday, while the main casino and Irene Moore Activity Center will remain closed until further notice All retail stores will be open as usual on Sunday.
Robert Hesson was attending a friend’s birthday party in the casino banquet room when the staff rushed and yelled at them to get out.
Heson said he couldn’t hear the gunshots and initially thought it might have been a fire, but as they were leaving the building, police cars were speeding at the scene.
Outside, Hesson said, employees asked them to keep further and further from the building while the police were scrambling with tactical weapons and shotguns.
Around 7:30 PM, while he was in the parking lot, Hyson said he first heard gunshots, then a large number. People told them to stand behind cars and get off.
Pondering what had happened, Heson said it was hard to believe that something like this had happened here.
“I know no place is immune to this,” Heson said, “but he’s now hitting the house.”
“It’s sad and disgusting, all at the same time,” he said.
Heson thanked the casino staff for their professionalism in getting people out of the building and keeping them safe, “because as we understood, there were people who couldn’t get there tonight.”
Brownsville’s Max Westphal said he was playing blackjack with a group of friends when an advertisement came over a loudspeaker that people must evacuate.
At first, he said they thought it was a simple thing. However, once they got out, they heard the situation escalate.
“Suddenly, there was a huge wave of gunshots. Between 10 and 30 rounds of fire,” Westphal said. “All you could smell outside was gunpowder.”
He said they rushed away from the scene.
Taylor Schroeder was in the bingo hall in a separate building and did not hear gunshots, but he said the players were put in lockdown around 8 p.m. and given no information about what was happening.
They kept playing the bingo game and received occasional “mysterious” updates even after about 45 minutes, when they were forced to leave immediately.
Outside, fire trucks, ambulances and police vehicles were “everywhere.”
“I am happy that we were able to evacuate effectively and quickly,” Schroeder said.