Cops: Jammed Gun Foiled Would-Be Mass Shooter

James Cameau shot a co-worker before killing himself, say police
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 8, 2016 7:00 AM CST
Cops: Jammed Gun Foiled Would-Be Mass Shooter
James Cameau is seen in this 2006 mugshot.   (Jacksonville Sheriff's Office)

An employee of a countertop supplier in Orange Park, Fla., shot and wounded a co-worker before killing himself on Monday—but "a tragedy was averted," police say. James Cameau, 34, had been working at Jacksonville Granite for less than a month and had seemed down recently, employees say. Then on Monday, he left work around 10am and returned shortly after noon with a semi-automatic pistol and found 11 employees gathered at the back of the building, report WMAZ and WXJT. "You better run," he allegedly said before trying to open fire. His gun jammed twice, giving employees time to run through the front of the building and toward their cars, police say. Cameau followed and eventually fired several bullets, but he hit only vehicles. He then chased co-worker Dean Hagins Jr. and shot him in the backside before Hagins jumped a fence and escaped, police say.

"Thank you Jesus for being with me today," Hagins wrote on Facebook on Monday; he's listed in good condition at a hospital, per the New York Daily News. Other employees say they didn't take Cameau seriously at first. "He was pointing right at me telling me to run," says one. "I thought it was a toy gun or something. I didn't think he would do something like that. He didn't seem like that type of person." When police arrived, they found Cameau dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound in a closet. "At least two people that he was at point-blank range with could have lost their life," an officer says. "He was shooting at all of them," he adds, per the Florida Times-Union. Authorities have yet to pinpoint a motive. Cameau, who was staying at a hotel and had no wife or kids, was previously charged with DUI and driving with a revoked license. (More Florida stories.)

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