Dimond Walmart parking lot shooting that killed 2 was homicide-suicide, police say
Police say a shooting in the Walmart parking lot near Dimond Boulevard was a domestic violence incident
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Two people, including a store employee who was on break, are dead from a shooting Sunday evening in the Walmart parking lot near Dimond Boulevard, according to the Anchorage Police Department.
Officials identified the shooter Tuesday morning as 29-year-old Saina Fa’atoafe. Police said Fa’atoafe shot the woman before taking his own life.
As a result, the superstore closed several hours early, and customers were quickly escorted out of the sprawling building.
In a release, police said reports of the shooting came in just after 5 p.m. Sunday.
When officers arrived at Walmart, they found Fa’atoafe and the woman dead at the scene. Due to the injuries, the victims were beyond help and could not be revived, according to APD Crime Scene Team Leader Sean Keating. Both were described as having facial trauma due to gunfire.
Walmart spokesperson Kelsey Bohl confirmed Sunday that one was an employee who was on break. She said the company is offering employees various counseling services through in-person, online and telephone support.
“We’re heartbroken by what’s taken place, and our thoughts are with those affected by this tragedy. We’ll work closely with law enforcement through the course of their investigation and refer further questions to the police,” Bohl wrote in an emailed statement.
Neither Walmart nor Anchorage police clarified which person was the store employee.
About a dozen police officers and the homicide unit were stationed inside a large area, which was secured, as they investigated the shooting Sunday night.
Hours after the shooting, the victims’ bodies remained on the ground outside of two trucks as APD continued its investigation, which they expected to continue through most of the night.
Keating said it’s amazing that there were no bystanders hit while the shooting occurred. Keating’s team was putting the scene together for hours after the shooting. The scene included scattered shell casings and a pistol lying on the ground.
“It’s so populated that you think that it’s not a big deal and to have this happen right outside the main entrance is just insane,” Keating said. “We’re already working with Walmart trying to get footage and basically put the scene together.”
According to a release, the circumstances surrounding the incident are under investigation, but officers believe this was an isolated incident.
Police report no arrests have been made, but officers are actively searching for the suspect.
To come forward with information about the shooting, call police dispatch at 3-1-1 or 907-786-8900.
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