Thank God for lunch breaks.
It appears that a lone gunman fired on a law office that was somehow involved in a personal injury case that was dismissed over a year ago. No lawyers were in the office at the time. The gunman, after shooting through the door to get into the office, fired multiple shots in the building before turning the gun on himself.
A Redditor whose mother works for the law office posted pictures of the damage and the crime scene. It appears that most of the firm’s employees were out to lunch…
A man who pulled into the parking lot of a downtown Covington law firm Tuesday afternoon and brazenly sprayed the business with as many 60 gunshots died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, but amazingly did not injure the manager inside the office, authorities said. Roderick Rist, 47, of Slidell, who was found dead inside the office, was a former client of Covington attorney Tim Upton, the firm’s owner.
The St. Tammany Parish coroner’s office said complete autopsy results should be available in the next few days.
Apparently the guy just started firing into the empty building. The newspaper reports that one person was still in the office, but was unharmed.
I’ve seen the photo spread of the damage that has been posted on Imgur [NSFW] by someone who claims to be the son of an Upton employee. The son/Redditor who posted the pictures and started a Reddit thread about the shooting adds this detail:
Apparently they learned during his personal injury case (settled over a year ago) that he had some mental health issues. Guess he just finally went off the deep end.
Some Redditors immediately questioned the lunchtime habits of the local attorneys: “What a moron. If you ever go to a law office from 10 am until 4:50 pm they’re out at lunch” (gotta love the internet). But many on the thread who have family members who are attorneys expressed fear of exactly this kind of crime.
It’s horrible to think that lawyers are risking their lives when they represent or argue against unstable clients with access to firearms. It’d be safer for all of us to live in a society where people with mental health problems didn’t have easy access to guns, but we don’t.
Law office shooting in Louisiana [Reddit]
Man who shot up Covington law firm killed himself, authorities say [New Orleans Times-Picayune]