Three dead, including shooter, in Louisiana theater shooting

Posted at 9:57 PM, Jul 23, 2015
and last updated 2015-07-24 08:35:45-04

A man opened fire inside a movie theater in a Lafayette, Louisiana, multiplex, Thursday night, killing two people and wounding seven others — before taking his own life.

The Lafayette, Louisiana, movie theater shooter was 59-year-old John Russel Houser, Lafayette Police Chief Jim Craft said Friday.

Craft described Houser as “kind of a drifter” who was from Alabama and had been in Lafayette since early July, staying in a local hotel. Authorities have found various “disguises, basically” at the hotel room where he’d been staying.

Houser fired at least 13 rounds, according to the police chief.

“It appears he was intent on shooting and escaping,” Clark said of the shooter. “The quick law enforcement response pushed him back into the theater.”

As to his motive, Col. Michael Edmonson of the Louisiana State Police said, “Why did he come here? Why did he do that? We don’t know that.”

The shooting took place shortly before 8:30 p.m ET at the Grand Theatre 16 in Lafayette, a city of about 120,000 people, 60 miles west of Baton Rouge.

About 100 people were inside the theater for a screening of the comedy, “Trainwreck,” when the shooter began firing using a handgun, police said.