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Officials say 3 dead, 7 wounded in Nev. restaurant shooting; 2 killed were National Guardsmen
CARSON CITY, Nev. (AP) ' A gunman with a rifle opened fire at an IHOP restaurant in Nevada's capital on Tuesday, wounding six people and himself and killing two uniformed National Guard members in a hail of gunfire during the morning breakfast hour, authorities and witnesses said.
A third person was killed in addition to the service members, and the gunman was not expected to survive, said Carson City Sheriff Kenny Furlong.
It wasn't immediately clear whether the gunman had any connection with the military or the Guard, said Nevada National Guard Sgt. Mike Getten. He said Guard members were meeting at the restaurant.
Furlong noted the shooting appeared to be an isolated incident.
"We came into this with everything we had. All agencies were committed to it," Furlong said. "There were concerns at the onset, so we took certain steps to ensure we had the capability to embrace an even larger circumstance. At this point in time it appears to be isolated to this parking lot."
Witnesses said a man pulled up in a blue minivan around 9 a.m. at the IHOP restaurant in a strip mall on Carson City's main street. He shot a man on a motorcycle, then walked inside the restaurant and started shooting, said Ralph Swagler, owner of Locals Barbecue in the same strip mall as the IHOP.
One of the two Guard members killed was a man; the other was a woman, authorities said.
Swagler told the Reno Gazette-Journal that after several minutes, the man walked outside and began firing into the Locals Barbecue and an H&R Block in the strip mall.
"This happens in third-world countries, not here," Swagler said.
Fran Hunter, who works at a Sierra Le Bone, a pet shop just north of the IHOP, told the newspaper that the suspect fired at least two shots toward Casino Fandango across the street.
"I don't know what's happening to my city," Hunter said. "This happens in L.A. or Las Vegas but not here."
Local and state police and FBI agents descended on the scene, and yellow police tape surrounded the parking lot at the restaurant, which is near a Kohl's department store.
Renown Regional Medicare Center spokesman Dan Davis told The Associated Press four victims of the shooting were being treated at the hospital in Reno, but he said he could not discuss their condition or provide any other information.
Kurt Althof, public relations manager for Care Flight, told the Gazette-Journal three victims had been taken to the hospital by helicopter and that two were in critical condition.
Furlong said the gunman was hospitalized with self-inflected wounds but was not expected to survive.
Nevada Highway Patrol Trooper Chuck Allen said extra security measures were put in place at state and military buildings in northern Nevada as a safety precaution.
"As you know when you have people in uniform who are randomly targeted for whatever reason this may have been, it is a safety precaution we take very seriously," Allen said.
Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., released a statement expressing condolences to the victims' families.
"I'm deeply saddened by this senseless act and extend my sympathies to those afflicted this morning," Reid said. "I applaud the first responders for their professionalism, and my thoughts are with the victims and their families during this difficult time."
Rep. Joe Heck, R-Nev., posted on Twitter that his heart and prayers go out to the victims' friends and families. And state Sen. Ben Kieckhefer tweeted: "My God be with the families of those hurt and killed in the senseless violence today in Carson City."
Associated Press writers Ken Ritter and Michelle Rindels in Las Vegas and Scott Sonner in Reno contributed to this report.