Virginia TV Reporters Shot And Killed On Live Television, Suspect Identified [UPDATE]

UPDATE (11:56 am): The media is reporting that the suspected shooter, Vester Lee Flanagan, aka Bryce Williams, has shot and killed himself. The gunman is apparently alive but in very critical condition.

UPDATE (11:19 am): WHSV reports that the shooter has been identified as Vester Lee Flanagan, also known as Bryce Williams, a “former disgruntled employee,” according to Governor Terry McAuliffe. A now-suspended Twitter account for @bryce_willams7 has been linked to the shooter — he tweeted video of the murders, along with other tweets that appear to claim responsibility:

twitter shooter video

Early this morning, a reporter and her cameraman were shot and killed on air as they conducted an interview in Moneta, Virginia. The reporter, Alison Parker, 24, and the cameraman, Sean Ward, 27, were both killed on the scene.

According to a report from the local CBS affiliate, WDBJ7, Ward was conducting an interview at Bridgewater Plaza in Roanoke when an unidentified gunman opened fire. The entire incident was broadcast on live television. The video is graphic and disturbing, and it can be seen here. CNN reports that the woman being interviewed, Victoria Gardner, is the executive director of the Smith Mountain Lake Regional Chamber of Commerce. She was shot in the back and is in surgery.

The unidentified gunman is still at large and area schools are on lockdown. This is a breaking news story, and we’ll update the post as it develops. [WDBJ7]