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Updated: Two Dead in Workplace Shooting in Roanoke


Two people are dead following a workplace shooting in Roanoke this morning.

Roanoke Police Chief Tim Jones says the shooter died in apparent suicide, and one employee of FreightCar America was killed.  Three others were injured.

In a press conference Tuesday afternoon Jones says the shooter was Getachew Fekede, a 53-year old who was a former employee of FreightCar America, where the shooting took place.

Fekede was found deceased at the scene from what is "believed to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound." 

Fekede was terminated in March of this year for missing several days of work. 

According to Jones, Fekede came to Virginia in 2011 by way of a refugee immigration program and was cleared to work by Homeland Security.

In light of the shooting, Jones commended FreightCar America for having an up-to-date emergency evacuation plan in place.

“Today’s circumstances could have been much worse if it had not been for the proactive steps taken by FreightCar America," said Jones. 

FreightCar America is within the Norfolk Southern rail yard along Campbell and Norfolk Avenues in Roanoke.

An active shooter call was placed to Roanoke 911 just after six Tuesday morning. Police closed down the entire rail yard and began an investigation that Chief Jones says will go over many acres and multiple buildings of FreightCar America and Norfolk Southern.

The identities of the victims have not yet been released. 

Robbie Harris is based in Blacksburg, covering the New River Valley and southwestern Virginia.