Entrances at Naval Air Station Corpus Christi in Texas are closed in response to an active-shooter threat May 21. (Photo: Annie Rice/Corpus Christi Caller-Times)
A gunman opened fire at a U.S. Navy air base in Texas on Thursday morning, wounding one sailor in what the FBI later called a “terrorism-related” attack.
About 6:15 a.m. Naval Air Station-Corpus Christi officials said authorities were responding to an active shooter on base. By 7:30 a.m., the shooter was “neutralized” and an injured sailor was taken to a nearby hospital and released, according to a news release.
FBI Supervisory Senior Resident Agent Leah Greeves said at a news conference that the incident was “terrorism-related” and confirmed the alleged shooter is deceased.
“We may have a potential second related person of interest at large in the community,” she said. “But we would encourage the public to remain calm, and if you see something, say something.”
The FBI in Houston said it will lead the investigation. Neither investigators nor the Navy provided details on the shooter or a possible motive.
Later Thursday, FBI agents and local police SWAT officers surrounded a home in Corpus Christi. A police spokesman wouldn’t confirm that the activity was related to the naval air station shooting, but said the FBI was taking the lead at the scene.
A female security force member was injured in the morning shooting and taken to a hospital, Steve Strickland, a spokesman with Navy Region Southeast, told military newspaper Stars and Stripes. Strickland told the outlet the sailor was in good condition and expected to be released later in the day.
The base has been home to naval pilot training since 1941, according to its website. The base went into lockdown, advising those in or near the north gate to get to safety and remain indoors and away from windows, officials said.
Representatives of the Naval Criminal Investigative Service and Texas Department of Public Safety were on scene, along with Corpus Christi police.
Officials lifted the lockdown at 11:38 a.m. local time.
Previous security incidents at the base
Four unrelated security incidents occurred at the base in 2019.
In early February, Daniel E. King, 37, was fatally shot after he was accused of stealing a vehicle and entering the base through the south gate, before crashing into a barrier at the north gate.
Later that month, the main gate was blocked for nearly two hours after a wanted vehicle was stopped by security after a military working dog alerted to the truck. There was a “be on the lookout” warning on the truck, and the driver was detained.
On Oct. 8, Brian Dale Robinson, 47, was charged with destruction of government property and possession of a stolen firearm after he was accused of ramming a stolen truck into the barricade of the base’s north gate.
In late October, base officials shared details of projects intended to enhance security, including new perimeter security fencing, turnstiles, vehicle sliding gates, surveillance systems with cameras and access controls, and miscellaneous sidewalk, driveway and landscaping improvements.
On Dec. 11, verbal threats from a Corpus Christi Army Depot employee prompted a lockdown, but no shots were fired and there were no injuries reported, according to a Facebook post.
Security apprehended the suspect for questioning without injury, and the gates were reopened to normal traffic. Initial reports said the suspect was armed, but Public Affairs Officer Francoise “Fifi” Kieschnick confirmed the suspect was not armed when detained.
Follow N’dea Yancey-Bragg on Twitter: @NdeaYanceyBragg
Contributing: The Associated Press
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