Deion Patterson was angry at ‘messed up’ meds before killing one woman and injuring four others, says mother
Atlanta mass shooting suspect Deion Patterson was angry at his “messed up” medication before he allegedly killed one woman and injured four others at a hospital in the city.
The suspect, who used to serve in the US Coast Guard, remains on the loose and a massive manhunt is underway after police warned that the 24-year-old is “considered armed and dangerous.” “DO NOT approach him,” tweeted Atlanta Police Department as they identified him.
The suspect, who has a military background, had originally attended a medical appointment at the building on Wednesday at which he was accompanied by his mother, reported CNN.
During the appointment he became agitated, pulled out a handgun and allegedly started shooting, a police source told the news network.
“The damn VA gave him some messed up medication. And all he wanted was an Ativan,” his mother, Minyone Patterson, told The Daily Beast before hanging up.
Atlanta Police Department Chief Darin Schierbaum told reporters that all five women had been shot in a waiting room on the 11th floor of the building.
Chief Schierbaum said that the woman who died was 39, while the other four wounded women are aged 25, 39, 56 and 71.
Heavily armed law enforcement officers rushed to 1100 West Peachtree Street Northwest, which is a Northside Hospital facility, on Wednesday lunchtime as the violence unfolded.
“There have been no additional shots fired since the initial incident,” Atlanta Police Department spokesperson Sgt John Chaffee said in a statement.
“We are currently aware of five shooting victims related to this situation. Four have been transported to the hospital for treatment and a fifth has been pronounced deceased on scene.”
All of the victims were transported to Grady Memorial Hospital, which is a level 1 trauma centre.
Dr Robert Jansen told reporters at a press conference that three of the victims transported to the hospital were in critical condition, with one person in surgery.
One of the patients was admitted with a gunshot wound to the abdomen and another with a wound to the arm, according to the hospital. A third critical patient was shot in the face and required an interventional radiology procedure, says CNN.
Images taken from a security video showing a masked man in a hoodie and carrying a bag slung across his chest were also released by APD.
Multiple agencies including Atlanta police, Atlanta fire, MARTA police, Georgia Tech police and the Georgia State Patrol responded to the situation.
Northside Hospital later confirmed that its building was the location of the shooting.
“Northside Hospital is cooperating with law enforcement following the shooting at our midtown Atlanta location earlier this afternoon. We urge people in the area to shelter in place and follow instructions from law enforcement on the scene,” hospital officials tweeted.
“We are working an active shooter situation inside a building on West. Peachtree St, between 12th St and 13th St. We are aware of multiple people injured. No suspect is in custody,” Atlanta Police Department tweeted earlier on Wednesday.
“Anyone in the area is asked to secure their building and shelter in place. Anyone not in the area is asked to stay away. “
The city’s mayor also took to Twitter to urge people in the area to take shelter.
“I am in close contact with the Atlanta Police Department as they are responding to the active shooting situation in Midtown near 1100 W Peachtree. Those in the area should shelter in place,” tweeted Andre Dickens.
At around 1.30pm ET Atlanta Public Schools notified parents that several schools would be placed on exterior lockdown for the rest of the day out of an “abundance of caution.”
Police are also investigating a nearby carjacking incident reported at Williams and 13th Streets blocks from the hospital. Shooting suspect Deion Patterson is no longer believed to be near the hospital. Police are working to determine whether the incidents are related.
Northside Hospital Midtown medical building is a 12-storey facility that was opened by the Northside Hospital health system in 2018.
When it was opened the health system said that the almost 169,000-square-foot building would house doctor’s offices and services for cancer, radiology, a spine centre, sleep disorders, diabetes and nutrition, maternity, sports medicine and urgent and primary care.
The Coast Guard said in a statement on Wednesday that the suspect “entered the Coast Guard in July 2018 and last served as an Electrician’s Mate Second Class. He was discharged from active duty in January 2023.”
“Our deepest sympathies are with the victims and their families,” they added, according to CNN.
A vehicle allegedly stolen by Deion Patterson was later on Wednesday located inside a parking garage along Heritage Court near The Battery Atlanta.
“We did get information that the shooter may have come to Cobb County, so we began to actually check our flock cameras,” said Cobb police spokesman Sgt Wayne Delk. “We went back and did discover that the vehicle had entered Cobb County.”