gunman who killed threeKansasOn Thursday, he was granted a protective order by police 90 minutes before the shooting, the local sheriff said.
Sheriff T Walton named 38-year-old Cedric Ford as the shooter at a news conference early Friday morning. Ford was shot dead by police at the Heston factory where he worked before the riots. Ford was an employee of Excel Industries, a manufacturer of lawn care products about 35 miles north of Wichita, Walton said.
About 90 minutes before the shooting, police served Ford with a protection-from-abuse order, Walton said. The sheriff said warrants are usually executed "because there was some type of violence in the relationship," but declined to specify the nature of the relationship involved.
When Ford received the warrant, "he did not exhibit any outrageous behavior," Walton said. "It just shows that he's a little upset that he got the order."
Walton said the order was sparked by an incident at the plant and would be investigated as a "trigger" for the attack. But the sheriff cautioned that Ford's motive in the apparently indiscriminate shooting remains unclear. Asked why Gunner chose Excel Industries, Walton shrugged: "He works there."
The sheriff previously described the shooting as "accidental" in which the gunman injured two men on the street and a woman in a parking lot before entering the factory. Ford injured at least 14 people, several seriously. All three victims were in the factory.
"The gunman is actively shooting at whatever target he is at," the sheriff said. "This is a horrible situation, horrible, horrible."
Commenting on the shooting Friday afternoon, Barack Obama said: "We cannot afford to be insensitive to this."
"This has happened too many times and affected too many innocent Americans," he told reporters during a stop in Florida. "The real tragedy is the extent to which this has become routine."
Public records show Ford grew up in South Florida and has various criminal charges and convictions in his home state. He was convicted in the early 2000s of robbery, grand larceny and eluding an officer, and in 1997 of unlawfully concealing a firearm. He was released from the Florida prison system in 2007 and had a misdemeanor conviction in Kansas in 2008 for fighting.
After the suspect was shot, police found a .223 caliber handgun and a handgun on the suspect. Public records show he lived in a mobile home park in nearby Newton, near where he first shot a pedestrian from his car.
Federal prosecutors announced Friday afternoon that they have charged Sarah Hopkins, a 28-year-old Newton woman, with allegedly supplying Ford with semiautomatic rifles and handguns.
According to an affidavit filed by police, Hopkins knew Ford was a convicted felon who was prohibited from possessing a firearm.U.S. Attorney's Office for KansasThe woman was charged with knowingly transferring a firearm to a felon.
Newton spokeswoman Erin McDaniel said local authorities were aware of Ford but declined to elaborate.
Recent photos on Ford's Facebook page show him sitting with his family in a car with guns and a bottle of gin, a pistol and an AK-47 rifle, complaining about his car being towed. Last September, he posted a video of himself being shot in a field.
Recent videos have been mundane: zoo visits, music videos, memes. He has appeared in many photos and videos at the zoo and at home with his two children. He occasionally sends messages to talk about his problems, such as in September 2015 when he wrote "heartbreak". Five days later, he posted a video of the rifle, and a month later he wrote: "It's such a pain when you have no one to talk to about your problems."
But when he wrote "feeling tired" on January 16, he was "feeling happy" two weeks later. Ford listed his occupation as a painter on Excel, but Walton said they had no reason to believe the three people killed were specific targets.
Excel's colleague, Martin Espinoza, who escaped the gunman when the Ford ran out of ammunition, told The Associated Press that the man was generally calm. Other co-workers told CBS that he was acting normal when he came to work on Thursday.
Get local KWCH newscopy of restraining orderv. Ford, the complainant said he was "alcoholic, violent and depressed."
"I believe he is in immediate need of medical [and] psychological help," the whistleblower wrote.
The person who applied for the warrant also described the incident as disturbing, saying an argument "turned into a physical altercation when he pushed me and then grabbed me" on February 5.
"He grabbed me by the neck from behind, I couldn't breathe, then he threw me to the ground while I was choking and finally he let me go."
The FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms are involved in the investigation, but a spokesman for the latter said the shooting does not appear to be linked to a terrorist group.
Walton downplayed speculation that Ford was unhappy at work or upset about a relationship, saying dozens of interviews and searches would take place. "We only had about 15 hours," he said.
He praised the work of the local police department, especially the officer who killed the assailant during the exchange of fire. Because there were about 200 people at the plant at the time, Walton said the officer was an "awesome hero."
"It would have been even more tragic if Officer Hurston had not done what he did," Walton said. Last week, Hesston police conducted a mass shooting scenario drill. The names of the victims have not yet been released.
"I've been here 28 years, eight years as sheriff," Walton added. "I've never seen anything like it. Somehow, we don't think it's all going to happen here. Well, isn't that what every sheriff standing on a platform like me says?
sequence of events
about 3:30 p.m. On Thursday, Wichita police issued a restraining order against Ford for a person seeking protection from abuse. The order was prompted by an earlier incident at Excel Industries, the plant where Ford works, but police did not provide details of what happened. Ford took a break from work.
Shortly before 5:00 p.m., Ford drove into the town of Newton and fired a shot from inside the vehicle. He tapped a man on the shoulder. Police received the first 911 call at 4:57 p.m. rice. of the victim.
He then drove into oncoming traffic and his car, along with another, fell into a ditch, police said. Ford shot another driver at the intersection and stole the man's truck, which he drove to Heston's Excel factory.
The gunman arrived at the factory around 5pm, where more than 200 people were working, police said. Ford shot a third victim in a parking lot.
Ford then entered the factory's main assembly hall, where dozens of people were working, and began shooting everyone in sight. There he killed 3 people and injured 11.
Police were called to the scene minutes after the gunman fired the first shots at the factory and exchanged fire with the Ford.
An officer shot him and police recovered a .223 caliber handgun and a handgun.
The shooting lasted about 26 minutes from the time Newton's first victim was struck to his death, police said.