Cincinnati Shooting: No apparent cause or motive, police chief says

Updated Sept 06, 2018

The latest in the deadly Cincinnati shooting that occurred at the Fifth Third Center on Fountain Square: 

• WHAT HAPPENED: Police received a call at 9:11 a.m. about an active shooter in the Fifth Third Bank Center lobby, 511 Walnut St., on Fountain Square.

• THE VICTIMS: Pruthvi Raj Kendepi, 25; Luis Felipe Calderon, 48; and Richard Newcomer, 64, were killed. One of the two people injured was hit by gunfire at least 12 times. She is in stable condition.

• THE SHOOTER: Police shot and killed Omar Santa-Perez, 29, in the banking center lobby as he exchanged gunfire with them. Police have not been able to establish a motive for the shooting.

>> Suspect said he was being watched

>> Cincinnati shooting: What we know now

>> PHOTOS: From the scene of bank shooting
>> VIDEO: Photos from the scene, local connection 

UPDATE @ 9:06 p.m.: One of the survivors, 37-year-old Whitney Austin, of Louisville, was hit by gunfire 12 times, her brother-in-law Lonnie Gardner told the Louisville Courier-Journal. 

Austin is listed in stable condition at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center.

According to her LinkedIn page, Austin works for Fifth Third Bank as a vice president senior product development manager. 

Her brother-in-law told the newspaper Austin travels to Cincinnati frequently for work and was moving through a turnstile while on a conference call when she was hit by gunfire.

UPDATE @ 6:06 p.m.:

The victims killed in are Pruthvi Raj Kendepi, 25, Luis Felipe Calderon, 48; and Richard Newcomer, 64, according to the Hamilton County Coroner’s Office.

Two others were injured, but their names have not been released. Thursday night, UC Medical Center officials said one of the survivors is in fair condition, the other is in critical condition.

Our news partner, WCPO.com, has identified Richard Newcomer, 64, as one of the people killed. He was employed by the Gilbane Building Company and was working on a project at the Fifth Third Center when he was shot and killed.

UPDATE @ 4:39 p.m.:

Cincinnati Police Chief Eliot Isaac, at a news conference, identified the gunman as 29-year-old Omar Enrique Santa-Perez of North Bend, Ohio, who had been in the Cincinnati area since 2015.

Santa-Perez was reportedly in a Potbelly Sandwich Shop, also on Fountain Square and near the Fifth Third Bank Center, before the shooting. He used a 9 mm semi automatic pistol, was carrying multiple magazines and a significant amount of ammunition, Chief Isaac said.

>> Cincinnati Shooting: Kettering woman had family inside building

Police have not been able to determine an apparent cause or motive and there’s no indication of any possible mental health issues, he said. Police believe he acted alone, the chief said.

In reviewing the timeline of events, Isaac said the incident occurred this way: At 9:11 a.m., the emergency communications center received multiple 9-1-1 calls about an active shooter in the Fountain Square Fifth Third Bank.

The shooter, dressed in business attire, entered the loading dock area of Fifth Third Bank headquarters and opened fire at about 9 a.m., Isaac said. The gunman then entered the lobby area, where he fired at people and police officers. No police officers were injured.

Four Cincinnati police officers arrived within minutes and exchanged gunfire with the shooter, who was killed. They handcuffed and secured him.

Four of the five victims were taken to UC Medical Center. The fifth victim died at the scene. Several of the victims were shot more than once.

>> Cincinnati Shooting: Deputies search home of suspected shooter

Isaac said there will be another news conference Friday, when more details and bodycam video from police will be released.

News Center 7's Kate Bartley has the name of one of the victims of a shooting in Cincinnati on Thursday morning.

EARLIER REPORT

Dayton Police Chief Richard Biehl called the Cincinnati shooting a “tragedy” and noted “we certainly wish the best to Cincinnati police and the entire community as they navigate through this difficult situation.”

>> Deadly Cincinnati shooting: What we know now

A Cincinnati councilman is reporting that one of the victims was hit by gunfire about a dozen times.

“Update: Not from police chief or city manager, but my own family and friends in Louisville, Kentucky,” tweeted Councilman Chris Seelbach. “One of the victims shot ("12 times all over her body" I'm told), is alive and from Louisville. Not releasing name, but so scary to have a personal connection.”

>> Cincinnati Shooting: Photos from search of shooter’s believed home

Hours before the shooter’s identity was known, Cincinnati police told our CNN affiliate Santa-Perez was not a former or current Fifth Third Bank employee at the time of the shooting.

As deputies surrounded the residence of the person suspected of today’s mass shooting in Cincinnati, one neighbor talked about how frightening the experience was.

The gunman had enough ammunition to kill 30 to 40 people, Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters said.

Police fired through a glass window and killed the gunman in the lobby, he said.

Thursday afternoon, Fifth Third Bank said in a statement their “thoughts and prayers are with everyone caught up in this terrible event.”

Police shut down several streets bordering Fountain Square -- Walnut Street from Sixth to Fifth streets and Fifth Street from Vine to Walnut -- as part of the investigation. The Square also remained closed. Its parking garage was closed several hours as well.

Once law enforcement confirmed the gunman’s identity, they surrounded the apartment building in North Bend, Ohio, a Hamilton County village west of Cincinnati and near the Indiana border, where he lived. 

Sheriff’s deputies searched the home once a search warrant was approved.

Sixth Street from Race to Main streets is closed; Fifth Street is closed from Race to Main streets; and Vine, Walnut and Main streets are closed from Sixth to Fourth streets.

>> Ohio leaders react to the deadly shooting in Cincinnati

The Cincinnati Reds tweeted that the team would hold a moment of silence prior to the singing of the national anthem at Thursday night’s game.

Elected officials from throughout the region released statements on the shooting:

“Jane and I are heartbroken about today’s shooting in our hometown of Cincinnati. This is a tragic day for our city and our state,” Sen. Rob Portman said. “While we are still learning about what happened and why, we thank all of our police officers and first responders for their bravery today, and for taking quick action to stop the suspect and provide medical care for those at the scene. We are praying for the victims, their families, and all those who’ve been impacted by today’s tragedy.”

Sen. Sherrod Brown also expressed his gratitude to first responders, tweeting, “We are thinking of everyone involved as we closely monitor the ongoing situation in Cincinnati. We’re grateful to law enforcement and first responders on the scene.”

>> Live Doppler 7 Radar | INTERACTIVE

Gov. John Kasich said via Twitter, “I’ve spoken with the mayor and informed him the state will provide any necessary resources to the local police. I commend the law enforcement, fire and EMS personnel who swiftly responded to the scene and share my deepest sympathies with the innocent victims of this violent attack.”

U.S. Rep. Steve Chabot, also via Twitter, said, “I am praying for all those involved in the shooting on Fountain Square. My staff and I are closely monitoring the situation as it develops.”

The FBI and ATF also had agents on scene to assist with the investigation.

We’ll continue to update this story as more information becomes available.