The Texas man who's suspected of shooting and killing himself and another doctor inside an Austin medical office on Tuesday was a pediatrician who had only been diagnosed with terminal cancer and had recently applied for a volunteer position in the firm, authorities said Wednesday.
Bharat Narumanchi, 43, went to Children's Medical Group on West 35th Street before 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, when he"exhibited a gun instantly," the Austin Police Department (APD) said.
Five people were inside the office at taken hostage at the moment, authorities said, though no children or patients were present. Narumanchi"told the hostages to tie themselves up," Austin Police Lt. Jeff Greenwalt told reporters during a news conference Wednesday.
Four of the hostages, all of whom were employees, managed to escape, either by escaping or following Narumanchi discharged them before police arrived, authorities said at a news release.
Dr. Katherine Lindley Dodson was"unable to escape" and was then the only remaining hostage, Greenwalt said.
When SWAT units arrived at the scenethey"were not able to make contact with anybody inside, were not able to establish communication and we're not able to hear anything as much as a disturbance or calls for help or gunshots," Greenwalt said. "Several hours after, when SWAT was able to acquire eyes interior the company to find out what was happening, we were able to find that both subjects were deceased."
It's uncertain what resulted in the deaths or who was within the building, though a negotiator talking into a loudspeaker had stated:"I wish to help you work through this. You've saved a great deal of lives"
Researchers are still working to find out more about Narumanchi's link to the physician's office but said he had implemented -- and has been turned down -- to get a volunteer position at the firm just a week earlier.
He reportedly encountered Dodson and other physicians during the preceding visit, though authorities do not yet know why he targeted Dodson.
Police also stated Narumanchi had recently been diagnosed with terminal cancer and"was given weeks to live," Greenwalt said.
"We feel as though his terminal cancer probably played a large part in anything it was that occurred in his life and also what was happening ," Greenwalt said. "We do not know exactly why he decided to take those activities or target this particular business. So we are asking if anybody is as buddies with either Dr. Dodson or even Dr. Narumanchi, knows why he might have wanted to come to this specific business or knows what might have been going on in his life... Please call out to the Austin Police Department tip line."
On Wednesday, an answering service employee employed for Children's Medical Group told Fox News that the office isn't accepting any phone calls or messages.
Police said that they received a telephone at 4:29 p.m. Tuesday to get a record of a man that entered the company with a gun which was holding people hostage. Officers responded to find someone barricaded inside the workplace, prompting them to call in the SWAT team.
Besides the pistol, police said Narumanchi had brought with him two duffel bags along with an apparent shotgun.
The hostage situation lasted about six hours, local affiliate FOX 7 Austin documented.
"When I came on the scene, I watched a woman being escorted by police from the taped area where she was met and hugged by a child," FOX 7 Austin's Amanda Ruiz reported Tuesday. "And that is what we've been seeing over the past few hours: multiple individuals being walked out and handed off to what we could simply assume are loved ones."
Greenwalt told colleagues on Wednesday they were able to get in contact with the defendant's family"even before we discovered everybody deceased within the business."
"They are completely cooperating with this investigation. I think yesterday's events surprise them as far as it did us," Greenwalt said. "They'd voiced interest in trying to reach out to the sufferer's family, also. This really is a shock to them as it would be to the rest of us app."
Dodson, a nurse, was beloved by patients and their families, a number of people told the Austin American-Statesman.
"You saw her in your worst when your kid was ill, and she just always had a grin on her head," explained Karen Vladeck, whose two children were among Dodson's patients. "She made you feel like you were the only parent , though there was a line of kids waiting."
Authorities are requesting anyone with video or information linked to the event to call APD Homicide in 512-974-TIPS or email email@example.com.