Suspected gunman killed after police say he shot 2 bystanders dead in Winthrop

WINTHROP, Mass. — A suspected gunman is dead after police say he stole a truck, crashed it into a building, got out of the truck and shot two bystanders dead before officers at the scene returned fire, fatally wounding him, police said.

The incident unfolded around 2:45 p.m. Saturday, when that suspected gunman stole a box truck owned by a plumbing and drain company and then crashed into a residential building on Veterans Road, state police said.

After the crash, the unidentified armed suspect got out of the truck, walked away from the truck and then fatally shot two bystanders, a female and a male.

“We are investigating whether the male may have been trying to engage the suspect to end the threat,” state police said in a statement. “The female and male are both deceased.”

“Winthrop Police arrived on scene within moments and shot the suspect. The suspect also is deceased,” state police said.

Police said there is “no active danger to the public” but they are asking the public to avoid the area.

When officers arrived on scene, they found two people suffering from gunshot wounds.

Police also saw a suspect -- and shot at him, police said.

One police officer, who was not seriously injured, was taken to an area hospital to be evaluated.

Neighbors described a harrowing scene.

“When I first heard it, I go, ‘Another accident.’ But then it sounded so loud, like an earthquake, like everything was shaking, it was so loud, the loudest I’ve ever heard,” said Bobby Harrington, who lives nearby.

Harrington ran outside to find a truck had smashed into the small building on Shirley Street. He said the truck also slammed into another car head-on that was going the opposite direction.

”So when he hit this house, I don’t even think he ever touched the brakes,” said Harrington.

Then Harrington said he saw the driver of the stolen truck get out, stumbling, with no shoes on.

”Then he started jogging, I heard the ‘Boom boom boom,’ I ran down, I looked down, the first thing I saw was the body in the middle of the street, so I ran down and got down behind the car because the shots were still going. You could see the smoke from the gun,” said Harrington.

Police said the gunman shot and killed a woman in the street before killing another man. Harrington said he went over to see if that woman was okay but saw she wasn’t moving and realized she didn’t make it.

”To me she was just walking down the street, she had a backpack on, she didn’t look that old, I think she just happened to be there,” said Harrington.

An active investigation is underway by the State Police Detective Unit for Suffolk County and the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office, with assistance from Winthrop Police, the State Police Crime Scene Services Section, and the State Police Ballistics Unit.

Winthrop is located east of Boston near Logan International Airport.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.

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