WEST HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. — A suspected gunman who shot three Stop & Shop employees in West Hempstead on Long Island has a criminal history and was previously hospitalized for mental health crises, officials said Wednesday.
Suspect Gabriel DeWitt Wilson was taken into custody on Tuesday at an apartment building on Terrace Avenue in Hempstead, hours after he fatally shot a store manager and injured two employees, police said. He faces charges of murder and attempted murder, according to police.
Wilson, 31, was a cart collector at the supermarket, Nassau County Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder said.
He walked into work Tuesday morning, headed to the second floor of the building and opened fire on two workers inside an office, Ryder said. He then walked down the hall to a second office and fatally shot a manager inside, according to the commissioner.
Police received 911 calls about an active shooter in the store, located on Cherry Valley Road, shortly before 11:20 a.m.
The store manager, a 49-year-old man, was pronounced dead at the scene, according to Ryder. The two employees who were wounded, a man and a woman, were taken to a hospital and expected to survive. Police said Wilson shot at two other employees, but they were not hit.
Wilson’s arrest history dates to July 2006, Ryder said, and includes a shootout in 2014 during which he was shot in the head. He was also charged in 2011 with attempting to distribute narcotics and had two mental health crisis incidents, one in 2016 and another in 2019, according to Ryder.
He also has multiple known addresses, and it wasn’t immediately clear whether the Terrace Avenue address was his primary residence, Ryder said.