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 October 26, 2023

Police confirm Maine mass shooter may have escaped on a jet ski

Police in Maine continue the manhunt for Robert Card, the suspect in a devastating mass shooting.

The otherwise tranquil town of Lewiston, Maine, is currently in the grip of anxiety and fear as authorities hunt down 40-year-old Robert Card. He is believed to be the prime suspect behind a mass shooting that took place on Wednesday, which resulted in the death of 18 individuals.

The violent incident commenced at the Sparetime Recreation bowling alley at 7:15 p.m. local time. Chilling CCTV footage captured the moment when Card, an Army reservist and firearms instructor from Bowdoin, Maine, walked into the bowling alley, wielding an AR-15-style rifle with a laser optic.

It's reported that seven individuals, comprising one woman and six men, lost their lives at the bowling alley, as reported by Daily Mail.

However, the violence did not end there. Another distressing call was received by the police about a similar shooting at Schemengees Bar and Grille. This location was approximately four miles away from the initial crime scene.

From the details provided, it appears that eight individuals met their tragic fate at the bar. Seven of them were inside the establishment while one was outside.

Local community in shock: understanding the tragedy

Meghan Hutchinson recounted the terrifying moment her daughter narrowly missed a bullet at the bowling alley, saying she was merely grazed by it. Another individual, identified only as Brandon, shared his harrowing experience during the attack at the bowling venue.

Following the incidents, the area surrounding the Lisbon High School gymnasium saw a heavy police presence. An armored law enforcement vehicle was stationed in the parking lot while authorities set up a reunification center at Auburn Middle School. Police took the added measure of knocking on local doors and combing the vicinity.

Additionally, helicopters could be seen circling the region as part of the manhunt, Washington Examiner reported.

Katie O’Neill, who is Robert Card's sister-in-law, gave a statement urging him to surrender. She mentioned the family's capability of handling the aftermath together.

O’Neill painted a picture of Card being a quiet, loving, hardworking, and kind individual. She disclosed his recent struggles with mental health, including a significant episode in the past year. He revealed that Card believed he was hearing people talk about him in various places, including the locations of the shootings.

Authorities intensify their search

As of now, Robert Card's whereabouts remain uncertain. His movements after the shootings are still a topic of speculation and investigation.

The search for Card has not been limited to ground efforts alone. The Coast Guard has confirmed that Card's Bayliner boat is missing. Marine records also indicate that he registered a Sea Doo jet ski in June 2019. Consequently, Maine State Police aircraft are scouring a section of the river in hopes of locating him.

Recent reports indicate that a blue Chevy Suburban believed to be carrying Card was spotted crossing into Massachusetts on the I-93. Similarly, Card's white Subaru Outback was found abandoned at a boat dock, prompting SWAT teams and armored tanks to investigate.

Given the seriousness of the situation, multiple federal agencies, including the FBI, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), and Department of Homeland Security (DHS), have joined the search.

Lessons to learn from this tragedy

  • Always be aware of your surroundings: In public places, identify exits and potential places to hide.
  • If someone you know shows signs of severe mental distress encourage them to seek professional help.
  • In the event of an emergency, prioritize personal safety: Leave belongings behind and get to safety.

Why this story matters to us all

The Lewiston shooting is a sobering reminder of the fragility of life and the unexpected dangers that can lurk. Such events shake the very foundation of community trust and the sense of security one feels in familiar places.

For many, bowling alleys and local bars are places of leisure, relaxation, and community gathering. The very idea that such violent acts can transpire in these locations is hard to grasp. This incident underscores the importance of being vigilant and always looking out for one another.

As the search for Robert Card continues, it's a poignant moment for all to reflect on the value of human life and community strength.

The resilience of the Lewiston community, as they come together in the face of such adversity, serves as a testament to the human spirit's ability to overcome, heal, and rebuild.

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Written By: Rampart Stonebridge

I'm Rampart Stonebridge, a curious and passionate writer who can't get enough of true crime. As a criminal investigative journalist, I put on my detective hat, delving deep into each case to reveal the hidden truths. My mission? To share engaging stories and shed light on the complexities of our mysterious world, all while satisfying your curiosity about the intriguing realm of true crime.
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