A gunman opened fire at two military recruiting stations in Chattanooga, Tennessee, on Thursday morning, killing four U.S. Marines before dying in the attack. Three others, including one police officer, were wounded. According to Ed Reinhold, the FBI Special Agent in Charge, the Marines were killed at a recruitment center where the Air Force, Army, Navy, and Marines all share offices. President Obama described the attack as a “heartbreaking circumstance” while cautioning that “we don’t know all the details.” According to CBS News, U.S. Attorney Bill Killian said officials were treating Thursday’s attack as an “act of domestic terrorism.”
The gunman was identified as Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez, 24, of Hixson, Tennessee. Federal officials said that he was not under investigation at the time of the attack.
The violence in Tennessee represents the first attack on a U.S. military recruitment center since 2009, when Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammad, a 23-year-old man unhappy about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, opened fire on two men standing near a recruitment center in Little Rock, Arkansas, killing one. Recruitment centers, by their nature, are open to the public, and Chattanooga’s Armed Forces Career Center had no additional security at the time of the attack.
In a statement released after the attack, Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam said that “lives have been lost from some faithful people who have been serving our country, and I think I join all Tennesseans in being both sickened and saddened by this.”