BRYAN, Texas (AP) — Police in Texas were still seeking a motive Friday for what led an employee at a cabinet-making company to open fire on his co-workers, leaving one man dead and wounding five others before shooting and wounding a state trooper during a search for the suspect.
The Bryan Police Department identified the man who was killed as Timothy Smith, a 40-year-old resident of Bryan. Two of the five people who were wounded at the business have been discharged from the hospital, two were in stable condition and one was in critical condition, police said on Twitter.
Smith's sister, Brittany Jackl, told Austin TV station KXAN that the family was in shock over his death. Smith is survived by two teenage sons and a wife, Jackl said, adding that he enjoyed his job at Kent Moore Cabinets.
“He used to send me Snapchats all the time from work, saying, ‘This is where I work, and this is who I work with,’ Jackl said. "He was honestly proud of where he worked, and I was proud of him."
Larry Winston Bollin, 27, of Iola, is charged with murder and attempted murder in the shooting. Police announced Friday evening that Bollin has also been charged with five counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.
He was booked into the Brazos County Detention Center in Bryan late Thursday, according to Bryan police. Jail records showed Bollin was being held on bonds totaling more than $3 million. No attorney was listed for Bollin in the jail record.
Investigators were still trying to determine what led to the shooting.
Bryan Police Chief Eric Buske told reporters that investigators believe Bollin used a handgun and was solely responsible for the attack, which happened around 2:30 p.m. Thursday. The shooter was gone by the time officers arrived.
During the search for the suspect, Texas Department of Public Safety said, he shot and wounded state trooper Juan Rojas Tovar, who remained hospitalized Friday in serious but stable condition.
Bollin was arrested in Bedias, a tiny community about 25 miles (40 kilometers) northeast of Bryan, Grimes County Sheriff Don Sowell said about two hours after the attack.
Bryan is about 100 miles (160 kilometers) northwest of Houston and is near Texas A&M University. With more than 86,000 residents, it is the seat of Brazos County.
In a statement posted on its Facebook page, Kent Moore Cabinets said “our hearts are hurting” and asked for “thoughts and prayers” for its employees and their families.
“We’re all devastated by the tragic events at our Stone City manufacturing plant in Bryan on Thursday,” the statement said. “We are fully cooperating with the police who are investigating this horrible crime.”
The company, which is headquartered in Bryan, makes custom cabinets. It has design centers in nearly a dozen Texas cities and employs more than 600 people, according to its website.
Employee Amelia Rodriguez said she heard several gunshots, describing them as a “boom,” and ran outside only to realize the shooter was, by then, also outside. She said she went back into the building and hid.
“I don't have ... words to express the sorrow that I feel in my heart for all this stuff going on,” referring to shootings in El Paso and elsewhere in the United States. “It's so sad it had to happen to us, too," Rodriguez said.
“Everybody told me this guy is very calm and ... out of the blue he decides to do this,” Rodriguez said.
Employee Matthew Hawkins said he heard what he thought was a loud crash, then realized it was gunfire and eventually ran outside the building.
“It felt like a drill and then whenever the shots started it was like, ‘It’s a shooting. OK, I run, I guess?'" he said.