An Argument Launched Canada's Deadliest Mass Shooting

Gunman attacked his girlfriend first, but she survived
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Apr 24, 2020 12:35 AM CDT
Updated Apr 24, 2020 6:21 AM CDT
An Argument Launched Canada's Deadliest Mass Shooting
In this Wednesday, April 22, 2020, photo, a couple place a flag at a memorial in Portapique, Nova Scotia, following Saturday's shooting rampage.   (Andrew Vaughan/The Canadian Press via AP)

Canada’s worst mass shooting erupted from an argument between the gunman and his girlfriend, who survived the attack, a police official said. The official confirmed to the AP late Thursday that the weekend shooting rampage in Nova Scotia stemmed from a domestic dispute involving the couple. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said more details would be provided at a news conference Friday. Police have said the 51-year-old gunman acted alone in the shooting spree that killed at least 22 people across northern and central Nova Scotia; there are 16 crime scenes in five different rural communities. The suspect was shot to death Sunday morning, about 13 hours after the attacks began.

Several bodies were found inside and outside one house in the rural town of Portapique, where the gunman lived part time, police have said. Bodies were also found in four other communities, and authorities believe the shooter targeted his first victims but then began attacking randomly as he drove around. He shot people in and around their homes and set fire to homes, all while impersonating a police officer. CTV News and the CBC report that the rampage began Saturday night with the suspect confronting a woman with whom he was in a long-term relationship, assaulting her, and handcuffing her. She managed to flee and hide in the woods nearby, at which point the suspect started his shooting spree. It was the badly beaten woman who alerted police to the fact that the suspect was driving a fake police car.

(More Nova Scotia stories.)

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