A mass shooting has rocked the small community of Arkabutla, Mississippi, with a single person accused of gunning down six people at multiple locations on Friday, authorities told The Daily Beast.
The Tate County Sheriff’s Office confirmed that at least six people were shot dead Friday morning in the “shooting spree” and that a suspect has been taken into custody.
The shooting happened in a residential area, but the sheriff’s office couldn’t confirm whether shots were fired inside an individual home.
Richard Dale Crum, 52, was identified as the suspected shooter on Friday afternoon. He’s been charged with first-degree murder with additional charges pending.
The first shots rang out around 11 a.m. outside a store in Arkabutla, a community of approximately 300 people about 35 miles south of Memphis, Tennessee. Action News 5 reported that a man died at the store, two people were found dead on a local road, two were found in a home, and a woman’s body was found in her vehicle.
A survivor indicated that at least part of the attack was at random, telling Action News 5 he didn’t know why he and his wife—who was killed—were targeted.
The Sheriff’s Office said Crum lived in Arkabutla and is being held without bail.
“We are in the very early stages of the investigation so we can only release a limited amount of information,” deputies said in a statement. “What we do want the community to know is that the suspect is in custody.”
Photos from the scene of the first shooting showed a truck with shattered glass in front of a convenience store.
Supertalk Mississippi Media, a statewide radio station, reported that a deputy spotted a car that fit the suspect’s description and he gave chase.
Tate County Sheriff Brad Lance told the station that the alleged shooter pulled into a driveway nearby and he was apprehended without incident.
The shooting sent a school into lockdown in the nearby town of Coldwater, it announced on Facebook. The school’s update, at 11:30 a.m. local time, said a shooter was “on the loose.”
A second update, in all caps, was posted 15 minutes later to announce that all students and staff were safe.
Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves said the shooter was a man who acted alone. He said a motive for the attack has not been identified.
“I will ensure that the full resources of the state are available to law enforcement as we continue to investigate the situation,” Reeves said.
The victims were not immediately identified by authorities.