The couple suspected in Sunday’s Las Vegas shopping center attack that left two police officers and a shopper dead often talked about killing officers and didn’t believe in the government, a neighbor says.
“They always talked about murdering cops,” neighbor Krista Koch told ABC affiliate KTNV-TV.
“They were going to kill as many officers as they can, and then they were going to do away with themselves.”
Investigators searched an apartment believed to be occupied by the shooters, trying to uncover clues about the midday attack. Police are looking into the couple’s ties to the white supremacy movement after finding swastika symbols during their initial investigation, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
The first shots were fired at 11:22 a.m. Sunday – the start of a “revolution,” the pair reportedly told witnesses. Investigators say the man and woman, armed with guns and ammunition, walked into a CiCi’s Pizza Restaurant, where they opened fire on officers Alyn Beck, 41, and Igor Soldo, 31.
Police say one officer fired back, but both died from their injuries.
Sheree Burns, who witnessed the shooting, says the officers didn’t stand a chance.
“I didn’t know what to think,” she said. “I realized the gun going off, then I hit the floor.”
In a statement, Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman called the killings a “cruel act” and praised the officers for dedicating “their lives to protecting all of us in our community.”
Walmart employees and shoppers were taken to a nearby women’s clothing store to be interviewed by police. The restaurant and Walmart remained closed as detectives processed evidence. Authorities said the investigation is “very complex” because it involves more than 1,000 witnesses.
“It’s a tragic day. But we will have a community to police, and well still have a community to protect. We will be out there doing it with our heads held high, but with an emptiness in our hearts.”
– Sheriff Doug Gillespie
Photos courtesy of Google.com