US 2 city employees dead, 2 others injured in shooting at Winston-Salem public works building, city manager says
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Winston-Salem city manager has confirmed that two employees are dead and two others were injured in a shooting at public works building, according to reports.
Gunshots were reported Friday morning at a Winston-Salem public works facility, according to police, who said they had stabilized the situation but would not offer any details.
Winston-Salem City Manager Lee Garrity said in an email that two city employees are dead and two people are injured. He said the wounded have serious but not life-threatening injuries.
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Winston-Salem city spokesman Ed McNeal said: “There is no ongoing threat.”
Winston-Salem Mayor Allen Joines issued a statement, saying, "We are very saddened by (this) tragic event.
Joines said workplace security is taken "very seriously" and will be "taking immediate steps to further improve workplace security."
Sanitation worker Dwight Black, 66, was running five minutes late when he parked his car at the facility. He said he was about to swipe his card to enter the building when people ran past him.
“They’re shooting. Run!′ Black said of the people leaving the building. “Fight or flight. I just followed suit.”
“I didn’t know what was happening so I just kind of got out of the way until I could ascertain what was going on,” he added.
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Black ran back to his car and said other people did the same and drove off. He said he just stood back and watched until police arrived.
Marchello Bitting, a sanitation worker, reported that he was in the breakroom of the Joycelyn V. Johnson Municipal Services Center on Lowery Street in Winston-Salem when shots rang out early Friday morning.
The employee told WXII 12 News the incident happened at about 6:45 a.m. He told news crews he hid behind a trash can during the ordeal.
He said the situation stemmed between an argument between two route partners.
The employee said the alleged shooter went outside where the gunfire continued.
" I hate that this happened. I know it was a very scary situation," Bitting said. "We heard a lot of gunshots everybody running through the building trying to get into a safe place."
Bitting said the ordeal lasted about 20 minutes.
"It was frightening but I prayed, and God had me. God had all of us," he said.
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Workers in the reflective gear worn by city sanitation workers were seen standing in a parking lot talking to each other.
The scene outside the building appeared calm.
No other information about victims in the shooting at a Winston-Salem public works building would be released until a 2 p.m. EST news conference, Assistant Police Chief William Penn Jr. said
A representative of the mayor’s office also referred a reporter to the 2 p.m. news conference.
Herbert Martinez told local news outlets a coworker at the site ran out and told him someone was shooting inside. Martinez said he stayed in his truck and heard gunshots. He said he and the coworker ran and hid in a ditch, where they heard more gunshots.
The building is east of downtown in the city about 245,000 people in the central part of the state.
Police said their Criminal Investigation Division is investigating and that the State Bureau of Investigation is also at the scene.
Police said traffic will be restricted to the area for most of the day.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
This is a developing story. Stay with us for updates throughout the day.
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