A gunman opened fire Tuesday morning at a FedEx facility in Kennesaw, Georgia. Six were shot, with their injuries ranging from minor to two in critical condition. Authorities report that the gunman is dead.
The Georgia facility is located in Kennesaw, near Atlanta, a quiet suburb unique in the U.S. for mandating every household own at least one gun. The law is not enforced, so the Kennesaw gun ownership rate hovers around 50 percent, according to its police chief. That’s still higher than the average rate of gun ownership in the U.S., estimated to be about 34 percent. When the law was enacted in 1982, Kennesaw had only 5,000 residents. Today, it has a population of 30,000.
The incident comes just one week after Georgia enacted what may be the nation’s most expansive concealed carry law. The National Rifle Association-sponsored “Safe Protection Act” allows gun owners to bring firearms into most public spaces, including schools, bars, churches, airports, and government buildings, even though researchers have generally found that more people die from gun homicides in areas with higher rates of gun ownership.
“FedEx is aware of the situation,” the company told WSBTV. “Our primary concern is the safety and well being of our team members, first responders and others affected. FedEx is cooperating with authorities.” It isn’t the first time a facility has been the scene of a shooting; in 2011, a gunman shot himself in a FedEx warehouse in Illinois. The company is also one of at least 34 corporations that boost the NRA, offering discounted shipping to NRA members.
FedEx employee Liza Aiken told the Atlanta Journal-Constitutional she saw the shooter with an assault rifle and “bullets strapped to his chest like Rambo. I mean he looked like he was heading into war.” So far it is unclear how the shooter, IDed by the witness as a package loader, managed to get through the facility’s security checkpoint.