Latest on Chattanooga:
A Navy officer and a Marine fired their sidearms hoping to kill or subdue the gunman who murdered five service members last week in Chattanooga, Tennessee, according to multiple military officials familiar with internal reporting on the tragedy.
The Navy Times reports:
It remains unclear whether either hit Muhammad Abdulazeez, who was shot and killed on July 16 after he gunned down four Marines and a sailor at the Navy Operational Support Center in Chattanooga. It’s also unclear why they were armed, as it is against Defense Department policy for anyone other than military police or law enforcement to carry weapons on federal property.
A report distributed among senior Navy leaders during the shooting’s aftermath said Lt. Cmdr. Timothy White, the support center’s commanding officer, used his personal firearm to engage Abdulazeez, Navy Times confirmed with four separate sources. A Navy official also confirmed a Washington Post report indicating one of the slain Marines may have been carrying a 9mm Glock and possibly returned fire on the gunman.
The various law enforcement agencies investigating the Chattanooga shooting declined to comment. A source close to the investigation said details of the rampage’s last few minutes remain unclear, but no information has emerged to contradict the Navy’s internal findings.
Authorities will not know whether White or the Marine hit Abdulazeez until an autopsy and ballistics assessment are performed.
Several attempts to contact White were unsuccessful.
The shootings in Chattanooga unfolded on the morning of July 16 when, the FBI said, Abdulazeez pumped dozens of rounds into a strip mall recruiting station before driving across town to the Navy support center. No one was killed inside the recruiting station.
Sad that a service member is being punished for using his sidearm to try to defend against a crazed gunman, right? The military is full of crazy rules and regulations, but it seems like they could have made an exception for this one. As for me, I will celebrate this as an act of heroism.