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Active shooter killed, multiple dead after incident at Naval Air Station Pensacola

Police cars escort an ambulance after a shooter open fire inside the Pensacola Air Base, Friday, Dec. 6, 2019 in Pensacola, Fla. (Tony Giberson/ Pensacola News Journal via AP)
Police cars escort an ambulance after a shooter open fire inside the Pensacola Air Base, Friday, Dec. 6, 2019 in Pensacola, Fla. (Tony Giberson/ Pensacola News Journal via AP)
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PENSACOLA, Fla. (WEAR) – Authorities speaking on the condition of anonymity confirmed with The Associated Press that the shooting suspect was 2nd Lt. Mohammed Saeed Alshamrani, an aviation officer in the Saudi Air Force.

The Escambia County Sheriff's Office (ECSO) confirmed Friday that four people are dead including the shooter following an incident at Naval Air Station Pensacola in Florida.

The Associated Press reports Alshamrani was attending aviation school at the base, one of hundreds of foreign nationals receiving training there.

Law enforcement are investigating if this incident is terrorism-related. In a Friday night press conference, the FBI did not release the identity of the shooter and did not comment on any motives.

“There are many reports circulating, but the FBI deals only in facts," said Rachel L. Rojas, the FBI's special agent in charge of the Jacksonville Field Office. “This is still very much an active and ongoing investigation."

The sheriff's office says two deputies were also shot and injured while responding to the incident, including an officer that killed the shooter. The deputies suffered non-life threatening injuries and were taken to area hospitals for treatment.

The active-shooter situation was first reported at 6:51 a.m. and authorities said the shooter killed by deputies at the base around 7:45 a.m. on Friday.

NAS Pensacola confirms that the shooting happened at Building 633 and ECSO says the incident spanned two floors. Escambia County Sheriff's Office confirmed the shooter used a handgun and that the shooter was an aviation trainee at the base.

The shooter and two victims were killed at the base. Another victim was taken to Baptist Hospital, where that patient died.

No additional shooters or suspects are believed to have been involved in this incident.

"Walking through the crimes scene was like a scene of a movie," said Sheriff David Morgan in a press conference.

Morgan also said that due to the nature of the investigation involving a foreign national, they are limited in the information they can release while the investigation is ongoing. The FBI is expected to release more details at a later time.

Baptist Hospital confirms that eight patients are in their care. The hospital was on lockdown due to safety precautions, but that lockdown has been lifted.

"Base security and the Naval Criminal Investigative Service are currently investigating. The names of the victims will not be released until the next of kin have been notified," the U.S. Navy said in a statement.

President Donald Trump tweeted that he was briefed on the shooting and is in communication with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. He offered his thoughts and prayers to the victims and their families. The president also mentioned that he received a phone call from King Salman of Saudi Arabia who also offered his condolences to the families.

A resident who lives in the neighborhood says she learned about the incident after receiving an all-call. She says the all-call advised everyone to get somewhere safe and that the base is under lockdown.

The base will be shut down until further notice. Officials are advising everyone to avoid the area. NAS Pensacola Corry Station is also on lockdown. This is only a precaution, officials say.

OneBlood is asking all eligible donors to visit a donor center or Big Red Bus blood drive and donate. The organization says it responded to the shooting by rushing additional blood to area hospitals to treat the wounded.

Governor Ron DeSantis and Rep. Gaetz took to Twitter to say the are monitoring the situation.

The Associated Press reports that "NAS Pensacola employs more than 16,000 military and 7,400 civilian personnel." The base is also home to the Blue Angels and the National Naval Aviation Museum. This is the second shooting on a naval base this week.

Republican Florida Senator Rick Scott released the following statement regarding the shooting at the Naval Air Station in Pensacola, Florida.

“I'm extremely concerned by the reports that this shooter was a foreign national training on a U.S. military base in Florida. Whether this individual was motivated by radical Islam or was simply mentally unstable, this was an act of terrorism. It's clear that we need to take steps to ensure that any and all foreign nationals are scrutinized and vetted extensively before being embedded with our American men and women in uniform," said Scott.
“Today, I’m calling for a full review of the U.S. military programs to train foreign nationals on American soil. There is no reason we should be providing state-of-the-art military training to people who wish us harm. And most importantly, there is no reason to risk the safety and security of our American men and women in uniform. If not for the bravery displayed by the military personnel on the ground and local law enforcement, today’s tragedy could have been much worse. We must be vigilant against those who wish our country and our people harm."
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Editor's Note: The Associated Press has contributed to this report.

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