By John Felix Richardson
Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was fatally wounded after a shooting incident in Tucson.
Arizona, USA – The suspected gunman in the Arizona shooting incident is facing criminal charges including a charge for an assassination attempt of a congresswoman.
The suspect was identified as Jared Lee Loughner, a 22-year old from southern Arizona. He was charged by the government with two counts each for first degree and attempted murder and one count for attempted assassination.
The shooting incident happended Saturday morning outside a supermarket in Tucson. Six people were killed and 14 others were wounded including Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. The Arizona congresswoman suffered a fatal wound in the head and is now being treated at the University Medical Center in Tucson.
According to authorities, the suspect fired a semi-automatic pistol at point blank range outside the supermarket. Among those who were killed were U.S. federal judge John Roll, a 9-year-old girl and a congressional aide. Giffords was holding a meeting with her constituents at the supermarket when the incident occurred.
Investigators said that as of the moment they are not suspecting any other individuals, aside from Loughner, to be involved in the shooting incident. FBI director Robert Mueller said in a news conference that although there were no specific threats, public officials should still be on alert.
Investigators said that they were able to find an envelope at the suspect’s residence with the words “My assassination” and “Giffords” in it. There were also videos seen on YouTube’s website wherein a man named Jared Lee Loughner criticizes the government. It was not yet clear though if the man seen in the video is the same as the suspect.
President Barack Obama called on all Americans to observe a moment of silence Monday at 11 a.m. EST for all the victims and their families. The hearing of the case against Loughner will be heard a few hours after the moment of silence is observed.
Giffords, 40, is under intensive care at the Tucson hospital and doctors were optimistic that she would survive. The doctors said that the congresswoman were able to respond to commands and it gave them more hope that she will recover.