Skip to comments.Suspect arrested in Orlando shooting, one dead
Posted on 11/06/2009 1:59:12 PM PST by Star Traveler
By Andy Boyle, Shirl Kennedy and Kim Wilmath, Times Staff Writers
Posted: Nov 06, 2009 12:51 PM
Police have arrested the man they say shot one person to death and wounded four others Friday at a downtown Orlando office building where he had been fired from an engineering firm two years ago, the Orlando Sentinel reported.
The suspect, Jason Rodriguez, 40, was arrested at about 2 p.m., the Sentinel reported, more than two hours after the shooting. He was taken into custody at the home of his mother about eight miles away from the shootings.
The shooting, which occurred one day after a mass shooting at Ft. Hood in Texas, happened about 11:30 a.m. at Reynolds Smith & Hills, an architecture and engineering firm in Legions Place, a 16-story building on the northern edge of downtown Orlando across from Lake Ivanhoe. Rodriguez used a handgun, said the Orlando Fire Department.
WFTV-TV reported that his mother, who lives at the Hollowbrook Apartments on Curry Ford Road, was at home when she saw her son's photo on TV and called police.
As he was led away in handcuffs, reporters asked Rodriguez why he committed the shootings. "They left me to rot," he replied. Asked if he referring to Reynolds, Smith & Hills, he said: "No. No. I'm angry.''
The Sentinel spoke to a resident at the Hollowbrook Apartments, Marvin Higgins, who said a plainclothes officer came into his building and told him to stay inside.
As they led Rodriguez outside, "He was calm," Higgins told reporters.
Mike Bernof, spokesman for Reynolds Smith & Hills Inc., told CNN that Rodriguez was fired two years ago for performance reasons. Bernof said Rodriguez worked in transportation engineering. He worked there for 11 months and did not meet the firm's standards, said Ken Jacobson, legal counsel for the firm.
Rodriguez had a string of financial troubles and filed for bankruptcy May 26, according to court and bankruptcy records. He owes $11,000 for child support, $28,912 to Sallie Mae for student loans, $24,520 to a credit union. His last known address was listed as 3326 Lila Drive, Orlando.
The Sentinel reported that records show Rodriguez's mental state was evaluated the same month he was fire and that he attacked a nurse's aid at Florida Hospital-East. He was fired as an engineering inspector for Orange County Public Works last year after four months on the job, the Sentinel reported. The county cited "job abandonment" as the reason for the firing.
Orlando Police Chief Val Demings said Rodriguez seemed to be shooting indiscriminately, with no specific target, the Sentinel reported.
The number of reported casualties fluctuated in the hours after the shooting, from six to as many as 17, but at about 2:30 p.m. the fire department confirmed that five people were shot, one fatally. Another person was hospitalized with chest pains.
The newspaper reported that Stephen Kerkhof, assistant chief of the Orlando Fire Department, said two victims exited the building on their own strength. One was found near Lake Dot, just north of the Amway Arena, and two others were found in the building, he said.
Three of the four who were taken to Orlando Regional Medical Center are male, and one is female, hospital spokeswoman Katie Dagenais told the Sentinel. Their ages range from 23 to 49 years old. All are being evaluated for gunshots and may have surgery. Two others were taken to Florida Hospital Orlando.
Authorities have not identified any of the victims from Friday's shootings. The Sentinel reported that bodies were found on the 12th and 8th floors of the building. Reynolds Smith & Hills Inc. is on the 8th floor.
A Florida Department of Transportation employee was shot while at the building on business, according to DOT spokesman Steve Olson. Olson said the man was alive and being treated, but he would not identify him.
WFTV-TV reported that it arrived on the scene and spoke to one man who said he saw someone screaming at him to get out of the building immediately. Other people were led out of the building, distraught and crying, the station reported.
A witness, Gerry Kilga, told the station ,"We got back in our office and everybody kind of huddled in our office waiting for police."
About 50 paramedics responded.
Surrounding businesses and schools were placed on lockdown, the station said.
After the shooting, Interstate 4 eastbound was shut down from John Young Parkway to State Road 417, and tolls were suspended on S.R. 408 and S.R. 417 to help with traffic. The interstate was reopened at about 2:30 p.m.
Rodriguez does not have a criminal record in Florida, according to the Department of Law Enforcement. He has had four traffic infractions in Orange County.
Court records show that Rodriguez was divorced from his wife, Neshby Rodriguez, in 2006. The two married in 2001, records show.
According to Florida Department of State, the couple owned a cell phone business together called Cellular Masters in 2003.
This one, to me, sounds like a guy who just snapped.
What's up with the "huddled masses"? They seem to be yearning to kick ass.
Some US mass shootings...
Here is a glance at some of the worst U.S. mass shootings:
April 3, 2009: A 41-year-old man opened fire at an immigrant community center in Binghamton, N.Y., killing 11 immigrants and two workers. Jiverly Wong, a Vietnamese immigrant and a former student at the center, killed himself as police rushed to the scene.
March 10, 2009: Michael McLendon, 28, killed 10 people, including his mother, four other relatives and the wife and child of a local sheriffs deputy, across two rural Alabama counties. He then committed suicide.
Feb. 14, 2008: Former student Steven Kazmierczak, 27, opened fire in a lecture hall at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, fatally shooting five students and wounding 18 others before committing suicide.
Dec. 5, 2007: Robert A. Hawkins, 19, opened fire with a rifle in Omaha, Neb., at a Von Maur store in the Westroads Mall, killing eight people before taking his life. Five more people were wounded, two critically.
April 16, 2007: Cho Seung-Hui, 23, fatally shot 32 people in a dorm and a classroom at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, then killed himself in the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history.
Feb. 12, 2007: Sulejman Talovic, 18, killed five and wounded four at the Trolley Square mall in Salt Lake City. He was then shot and killed by police.
Oct. 2, 2006: Charles Carl Roberts IV, 32, shot to death five girls at West Nickel Mines Amish School in Pennsylvania, then killed himself.
March 21, 2005: Jeffrey Weise, a 16-year-old student, killed nine people his grandfather and his grandfathers companion at home, and then five fellow students, a teacher and a security guard at Red Lake High School in Red Lake, Minn. before killing himself. Seven students were wounded.
March 12, 2005: Terry Ratzmann, 44, gunned down members of his congregation as they worshipped at the Brookfield Sheraton in Brookfield, Wis., slaying seven and wounding four before killing himself.
July 29, 1999: Former day trader Mark Barton, 44, killed nine people in shootings at two Atlanta brokerage offices, then committed suicide.
April 20, 1999: Students Eric Harris, 18, and Dylan Klebold, 17, opened fire at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colo., killing 12 classmates and a teacher and wounding 26 others before committing suicide in the schools library.
March 24, 1998: Andrew Golden, 11, and Mitchell Johnson, 13, killed four girls and a teacher at a Jonesboro, Ark., middle school. Ten others were wounded in the shooting.
December 1, 1997: Michael Carneal, 14, opened fire on a group of praying students killing 3 young women, injuring four young women, and wounding one young man at Heath High School in West Paducah, Kentucky.
Oct. 16, 1991: George Hennard, 35, smashed his pickup through a Lubys Cafeteria window in Killeen, Texas, and fired on the lunchtime crowd with a high-powered pistol, killing 22 people. At least 20 others were wounded.
Aug. 20, 1986: Postal worker Patrick Henry Sherrill killed 14 people in an Edmond, Okla., post office, then killed himself.
July 18, 1984: James Oliver Huberty, 41, an out-of-work security guard, shot and killed 21 people at a McDonalds restaurant in San Ysidro, Calif. He was slain by police.
Aug. 1, 1966: Former Marine sharpshooter Charles Whitman climbed the stairs to the observation deck at the University of Texas Tower and began a 96-minute shooting spree, killing 14 people and wounding 31 before he was shot and killed. He had stabbed his mother and wife to death earlier.
Mass shootings/killings have been part of our society for a long while now... On and on it goes...
Just a guess... and that’s why I said “maybe”... :-)
Also..., from his picture... :-)
Looks like the anti-gun kooks are out in force on the comment thread...
I didn’t read them, but no doubt...