FBI To Investigate Shootings at Sikh Temple
OAK CREEK, Wis. (AP) — Police in Wisconsin say the FBI will handle the investigation of shootings at a Sikh temple near Milwaukee.
Oak Creek Police Chief John Edwards says the case is being treated as a domestic terrorism case and the FBI is better equipped to handle that.
Edwards said during a news conference Sunday afternoon that seven people are dead, including the suspected shooter, and three people are wounded. One of those is a police officer shot by the suspect.
The shootings happened about 10:30 a.m. as people were gathering for a service at the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin in Oak Creek, which is just south of Milwaukee.
Chief Edwards says the suspect "ambushed" one of the first officers to arrive at the scene as the officer tended to a shooting victim.
Oak Creek Police Chief John Edwards says the suspect shot the officer multiple times outside the Temple. A second officer then exchanged gunfire with the suspect and fatally shot him.
Edwards says the officer who was ambushed is undergoing surgery at a nearby hospital and is expected to survive.
Police earlier said the officer who was shot had killed the gunman, but released updated information later Sunday afternoon.
Police have evacuated homes in the Milwaukee suburb northeast of the Sikh temple.
The evacuations are in Cudahy, which is about six miles from the temple in Oak Creek.
Police have roped off four blocks in a neighborhood with a mix of duplexes and single-family homes. They appeared focused on one house.
FBI agents were on the scene with an armored truck, a trailer and other vehicles. Milwaukee County sheriff's spokeswoman Fran McLaughlin says the department's bomb squad is also on the scene, but she has no details on why the unit was called.
President Barack Obama says he and first lady Michelle Obama are "deeply saddened" by the killing of at least six people at the Sikh temple in Wisconsin.
In a statement issued by the White House, Obama tells the people of Oak Creek, Wis., that "the American people have them in our thoughts and prayers." He says, "Our hearts go out to the families and friends of those who were killed and wounded."
The president says his administration will provide "whatever support is necessary" to those investigating the shooting.
Mitt Romney, likely Republican challenger for the presidency, also expressed his sorrow about the shooting. He called it " a senseless act of violence and a tragedy that should never befall any house of worship." Romney said in a statement. "Our hearts are with the victims, their families, and the entire Oak Creek Sikh community. We join Americans everywhere in mourning those who lost their lives and in prayer for healing in the difficult days ahead."