A distraught Maine councilor has said he knows his son was killed in the Lewiston massacre – though authorities are yet to confirm – while a 10-year-old girl has spoken about being grazed by a stray bullet.
Survivors and bereaved family members have begun speaking out following the bloody massacre at Sparetime Recreation and Schemengees Bar and Grille in Lewiston, which has left at least 22 people dead.
Police have named previously sectioned Army reserve firearms instructor Robert Card, 40, as a person of interest. Card is from Bowdoin, and his car was found abandoned in Lisbon shortly after the shooting.
Leroy Walker, whose son managed the bar, said he is convinced his son is dead.
‘If you had my gut right now, I feel like I’m squashed with a vice,’ Walker told NBC. ‘My neck in the back of my head feels like there’s a vice squashing it the other way.’
‘And I don’t know, telling you the truth, what kind of night this is going to be from now until tomorrow when I wake up to the true facts that my son is dead – and I know he’s dead.
Zoey, 10, questioned ‘why do people do this’ as she sat beside her mother Meghan Hutchinson the morning after they survived the shocking attack at Sparetime Recreation in Lewiston
Police have named previously sectioned Army reserve firearms instructor Robert Card, 40, as a person of interest. Card is from Bowdoin, and his car was found abandoned in Lisbon shortly after the shooting
The gunman targeted Sparetime Recreation in Lewiston at around 7pm on Wednesday before shooting at the nearby Schemengees Bar and Grille
‘I know it as well as I know I’m standing here telling you because he’s not here and he’s not at any other hospital and he’s not running the streets or he would have called us, because he manages Schemengees, so I know he was there.’
Meanwhile, 10-year-old Zoey questioned ‘why do people do this’ as she sat beside her mother the morning after they survived the shocking attack at the bowling alley as their city remains on lockdown.
‘I never thought I’d grow up and get a bullet in my leg,’ Zoey told CNN. ‘Like, why do people do this?
‘I was more worried about, like, am I going to live and I going to make it out of here. Like, what’s going to happen? Are the cops going to come?’
Mom Meghan Hutchinson said her daughter was ‘grazed by a bullet’ amid the terrifying rampage.
‘She was grazed by a bullet while we were running,’ Hutchinson told ABC.
‘We were in the back room. Another child came in whose arm had a massive – was bleeding profusely.
‘So we barricaded in there and another parent was in the room with me. She had a phone and she called 911.’
Another Lewiston mom, Riley Dumont, was in the bowling alley with her daughter, and her parents, including her retired police officer father who leapt into action and saved several people’s lives.
‘I heard a really loud bang. I didn’t think anything of it at the time, but my dad looked at me,’ Dumont told ABC.
‘Next thing I know, he was just taking the group that we were in and just corralling us in the corner,’ she said.
‘He put tables over us and just made sure we were safe. He just kind of went into action at that point. It felt like it lasted forever.’
‘I kind of laid on top of (my daughter), and my mom was kind of on top of me. We had two other kids with us and two other mothers as well.’
The shooter used an AR-15-style rifle to open fire inside the Sparetime Recreation bowling alley at about 7pm Wednesday before targeting Schemengees Bar and Grille around four miles away.
A woman is hugged by a man at a reunification center at Auburn Middle School after shootings in Lewiston
Police officers in tactical gear get ready in the Lisbon High School gymnasium as an active search for the shooter is underway
Robert Card, a 40-year-old Army reservist and firearms instructor, has been named as the suspect in the murder of 22 people in Lewiston, Maine on Wednesday
Lewiston councilor Robert McCarthy said on Thursday morning the death toll was up to 22, and the town was struggling to handle ‘this kind of a shooting event.’
Lewiston, a small city of about 38,000, is on lockdown as police hunt for Card who was sectioned this summer with mental health issues. He previously reported hearing voices and threatened to shoot up his National Guard base in Saco, Maine.
‘Please stay inside your homes while more than 100 investigators, both local and federal work to locate Robert Card who is a person of interest in the Lewiston shootings,’ Maine State police said on Facebook.
Lisbon Chief of police Ryan McGee has called the entire police department to assist in the search and closed local businesses.
A heavy police presence is outside the Central Maine Medical Center on Thursday morning, with police standing at every entrance with high powered rifles. The hospital is under lock down and no visitors are allowed.
The FBI, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and other federal agents have joined the search.
Detectives said they are looking into cellphone signals, social media and electronic records to build a timeline of his movements before the shooting.
The mayor of Auburn, a town next to Lewistown, said on TODAY that some of the witnesses thought the rampage was a Halloween prank.
Tactical team members get ready to head back out to search for the suspect of a shooting in Lisbon
The shooter used an AR-15-style rifle to open fire inside the Sparetime Recreation bowling alley on Wednesday night. The venue is pictured above
The gunman then moved onto the nearby Schemengees Bar and Grille, pictured above
Jason Levesque said: ‘They thought it was some sort of Halloween joke or something, the initial pops if you would, until everything started escalating quite rapidly.’
An unnamed mother asked for prayers for her 22-year-old son, who was hit four times and is on a ventilator. She told WMTV about 20 other people were waiting for updates on their loved ones at the hospital.
The shooting in the state´s second-largest city is the 36th mass killing in the United States this year, according to a database maintained by The Associated Press and USA Today in partnership with Northeastern University.
A police bulletin describes the suspect, Card, as a firearms instructor believed to be in the Army Reserve and assigned to a training facility in Saco, Maine.
The document, circulated to law enforcement officials, said Card had been committed to a mental health facility for two weeks in the summer of 2023.
It did not provide details about his treatment or condition, but said Card had reported ‘hearing voices and threats to shoot up’ the military base.
Maine has a longstanding culture of gun ownership tied to traditions of hunting and sport shooting. The state doesn´t require permits to carry guns.
The death toll was staggering for a state that in 2022 had 29 homicides the entire year.