Sunday 17 December 2017

Everything you need to know about the deadly shooting inside a New York hospital

The gunman was an ex-employee of the Bronx Lebanon Hospital.

(Julio Cortez/AP)
(Julio Cortez/AP)

By Prudence Wade

Six have been critically wounded and one dead after a shooting at a New York hospital. Here’s everything you need to know.

What happened?

(Mary Altaffer/AP)

Dr Henry Bello entered the Bronx Lebanon Hospital in New York on Friday afternoon with an assault rifle hidden under his lab coat.

He shot seven people, killing one woman and leaving several doctors fighting for their lives.

People in the hospital described a chaotic scene as gunfire erupted. Employees locked themselves inside rooms and patients feared for their lives after an announcement that an armed intruder was loose in the building.

Who was Bello?

(Julio Cortez/AP)

45-year-old Bello was forced to resign from the hospital as a family medicine doctor in 2015 amid sexual harassment allegations. After his resignation he threatened his colleagues, saying he would kill them.

His former co-workers described a man who was aggressive, loud, and threatening.

According to New York State Education Department records, Bello graduated from Ross University and had a limited permit to practice as an international medical graduate to gain experience in order to be licensed.

He had a history of aggressive behaviour. In unrelated cases, the doctor pleaded guilty to unlawful imprisonment, a misdemeanour, in 2004 after a 23-year-old woman told police Bello grabbed her, lifted her up and carried her off, saying, “You’re coming with me.” He was arrested again in 2009 on a charge of unlawful surveillance, after two different women reported he was trying to look up their skirts with a mirror. That case was eventually sealed. It was not immediately clear if the hospital was aware of his criminal history when he was hired.

What happened to Bello?

(Mary Altaffer/AP)

After opening fire, Bello then shot himself, and died with the rifle at his side, officials said.

Bello may have doused himself with an accelerant like petrol and tried to set himself on fire before shooting himself, officials said. Sprinklers extinguished the fire.

What have officials said?

“There are many, many details that we’re still putting together,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said, adding that terrorism was not involved in the attack.

“This was a horrible situation unfolding in a place that people associated with care and comfort, a situation that came out of nowhere.”

What about the victims?

(Julio Cortez/AP)

Two surgeons at the hospital said that all six victims were in critical condition, but they were expected to survive.

Medical staff at the hospital immediately treated all the patients in its emergency department. The victims largely suffered gunshot wounds to the head, chest and abdomen, they said. The most seriously wounded was shot in the liver, said the surgeons.

Press Association

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