2 staffers dead, resident held in shooting at Maryland senior facility, police say

Associated Press

Capitol Heights, Md. —  Two staff members were fatally shot Friday at a Maryland senior living facility just outside of Washington, D.C., and a suspect was taken into custody, police said.

The shooting happened around 9:15 a.m. at National Church Residences Gateway Village in Capitol Heights, Prince George’s County police tweeted.

A resident who identified himself only as Donald said the shooter is his friend and lived in the complex. He said the man was fed up with how residents have been treated.

Police respond to the scene of a shooting at a senior housing apartment on Friday, Oct. 8, 2021 in Capitol Heights, Md. Two people were fatally shot Friday at the Maryland senior living facility just outside of Washington, D.C., and one suspect is in custody, police said. (Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post via AP)

“He told me, ‘Don, nobody is standing up for these seniors. I can’t take it no more. I’ve got to do something.’ And obviously what he chose to do is wrong, but he did something,” the resident told reporters.

“I know what set him off — the way they treat the seniors in Gateway Village!” Donald added.

The Gateway Village website describes the apartment complex about a half-mile east of the District of Columbia as an “affordable rental community for seniors age 62+” with studio and one-bedroom units.

National Church Residences spokeswoman Cindy Young said they “are extremely heartbroken” that two staff members were killed.

"We are proud of the heroic and swift actions of our staff to ensure that our residents were protected and kept safe. Our hearts go out to the families of our two team members who lost their lives in this tragic and unfortunate incident,” her statement said.

The shooter prepared to surrender even before police arrived, Donald said.

“I saw him after the shooting. He had come up to his place. When I stuck my head out after the fire alarm, he was laying prostrate on the floor, arms spread out and the weapon pushed six feet  in front of him,” Donald said.

“He told me to tell the police that he was no threat, that he was ready and waiting for them. He knew he was going away. He told me that. I called the police to get them on the phone, to tell them what was going on," added Donald.

Police initially said they were searching for any additional victims or suspects and people should shelter in place, but they later tweeted that one male suspect was in custody and there was no ongoing threat to the community.

Before the arrest, a nearby school was temporarily placed on lockdown as a precaution, and police asked concerned relatives of residents to gather at a nearby firehouse.