Three killed, two injured in shooting at California plant

Raquel Erhard – Fourth Estate Cooperative Contributor

Fresno, CA, United States (4E) – A 42-year-old employee of a California plant opened fire Tuesday morning, killing two co-workers and hurting two others before shooting himself.

According to police, Lawrence Jones, who has been working for the Apple Valley Farms in Fresno for 14 months, began his shift around 5 a.m. and three hours later, started firing on his co-workers.

Authorities said 32-year-old Salvador Diaz, who was pronounced dead on the scene, and 34-year-old Manual Verdin died at a local hospital.

Arnulfo Connriquez, 28, was shot in the neck and was transported to a hospital in serious condition.

Fatima Lopez, who was hurt as she was running out of the building, is recovering.

Investigators revealed that before Jones turned the gun on himself, he attempted to shoot a fifth person, but ran out of bullets.

Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer said that he reloaded his gun when he got out, “put it to the side of his head and took his own life.”

Jones was discovered outside with a gunshot wound to the head.

One employee, Berto Ordaz, said he was working when he heard the gunshots and saw people running and screaming.

Ordaz mentioned Jones had not been acting himself because “he was real quiet, he wasn’t talking to anybody.”

Police believe Jones’ targets were carefully thought out, because “he had opportunity to shoot other co-workers who were in the business at that time, but chose not to.”

There were around 65 people in the plant when the incident happened and about 30 of them witnessed the shooting.

Jones had been in and out of prison, but was recently paroled.

Police who searched Jones’s apartment discovered 24 rounds of ammunition, the same type used in the shooting. They are checking if Jones used a stolen gun.

Authorities have not released the motive for the attack.

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