Moral Low Ground


6 Dead, 2 Wounded in Kalamazoo, Michigan Mass Shooting

A Kalamazoo, Michigan man has been arrested after allegedly going on a shooting rampage, killing six people and wounding at least two others.

WMMT reports Jason Dalton, 45, was found with a semiautomatic handgun and arrested at around 12:40 a.m. in a traffic stop in the southwestern Michigan city of 75,000, nearly six hours after the first victim, a woman, was shot several times outside her home at Meadows Townhomes, off G Avenue, near Comstock. The victim is in critical condition.

Hours later, at around 10:15 p.m., a father and son were shot and killed at Seelye Ford Kia, an auto dealership on Stadium Drive. Around 15 minutes later, police say Dalton approached a Cracker Barrel restaurant and opened fire on two vehicles in the parking lot. Fox 17 reports four people were killed: Mary Lou Nye, 62; Mary Jo Nye, 60; Dorothy Brown, 74 and Barbara Hawthorne, 68. A 14-year-old girl was also shot and critically injured.

After Dalton’s mugshot was publicly released, numerous social media users claimed he was an Uber driver who was working shortly before the shooting spree. One frightened passenger told WMMT that Dalton was acting strangely and that he fled from the driver’s car in fear at around 4:30 p.m.

“He introduced himself with a different name than what Jason was that comes up for Uber,” said passenger Matt Mellen. “We were driving through medians, driving through the lawn, speeding along and when we came to a stop, I jumped out the car and ran away.”

Mellen then called police, posted social media warnings and contacted Uber.

“[It was a] pretty scary ordeal especially to be so closely involved with it,” he told WMMT. “I’m just happy I’m safe.”

Uber confirmed to CBS News that Dalton was one of its drivers, and had passed a background check.

“We are horrified and heartbroken at the senseless violence in Kalamazoo, Michigan,” Uber chief security officer Joe Sullivan said in a statement posted on the company’s website. “Our hearts and prayers are with the families of the victims of this devastating crime and those recovering from injuries. We have reached out to the police to help with their investigation in any way that we can.”

Neighbor Sally Pardo told CNN that Dalton, who is also an insurance adjuster, is married with two children, and that they seemed to be a “typical American family.”

“This seems so out of sorts for him,” added Pardo’s husband, who described Dalton as “quiet,” and “nice,” adding, “I know he liked guns.”

Other neighbors described Dalton as “paranoid” and said he was known to fire off his guns. He had no criminal record.

Kalamazoo County Prosecutor Jeff Getting said on Sunday that Dalton will likely face multiple counts of first-degree murder and attempted murder. He is due to appear in court on Monday.

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