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Tribune News Service
Tribune News Service
Aaron Sánchez-Guerra

‘Overcome with grief.’ Parents of Raleigh shooting suspect and victim release statement

RALEIGH, N.C. — The family of Austin Thompson, who is suspected of shooting seven people, five fatally, in Raleigh, said they have “so many unanswered questions” about the shooting.

The family released a statement Tuesday, six days after a shooting rampage that also killed their son, 16-year-old James Thompson.

The statement from Alan and Elise Thompson reads:

“Our son Austin inflicted immeasurable pain on the Raleigh community, and we are overcome with grief for the innocent lives lost.

“We pray for the families and loved ones of Nicole Connors, Susan Karnatz, Mary Marshall and Raleigh Police Officer Gabriel Torres. We mourn for their loss and for the loss of our son, James.

“We pray that Marcille ‘Lynn’ Gardner and Raleigh Police Officer Casey Clark fully recover from their injuries, and we pray for everyone who was traumatized by these senseless acts of violence.

“We have so many unanswered questions. There were never any indications or warning signs that Austin was capable of doing anything like this. Our family will continue to cooperate fully with law enforcement officials and do whatever we can to help them understand why and how this happened.”

Austin Thompson is a sophomore at Knightdale High School. James Thompson was a junior.

As the shooting rampage unfolded in the Hedingham neighborhood Oct. 13, law enforcement from numerous agencies took part in a massive manhunt to capture the suspect. He was “contained” at 8 p.m. and then in custody by 9:37 p.m., police said.

He has been in critical condition at WakeMed Hospital since then. Police have not said how he was injured or the nature of his injuries.

Raleigh Police have not disclosed details about the shooting that captured national attention. A five-day report from the city is expected to be released Thursday with information about the shooting, the police response and other details.

Radio traffic obtained by The News & Observer describe some of the activity that surrounded the capture in an area off McConnell Oliver Drive — about a mile northeast of the neighborhood.

Wake County District Attorney Lorrin Freeman told The News & Observer she plans to charge Thompson as an adult.

Clark, who was wounded during the capture, was injured and released from the hospital. Gardner remains in the hospital.


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