A shooter opened fire today during a Madden NFL 19 tournament at the GLHF Game Bar in Jacksonville, FL. Three people are confirmed dead, including the suspected shooter, while a further 11 have been injured.
During a press briefing at 4:30 PM EST, Sheriff Mike Williams made some short remarks about the incident. Jacksonville Landing, the mall in which GLHF Game Bar is located, has been cleared. There is one suspect deceased at the scene, and there are no outstanding suspects. The deceased suspect is a white male, and the Sheriff’s Office now believes him to be 24 year-old David Katz, a competitor at the tournament.
Electronic Arts tweeted a short statement in two parts: “We are aware of an incident at a sanctioned Madden Championship Series competition in Jacksonville. We are working with authorities to gather facts at this stage. This is a horrible situation, and our deepest sympathies go out to all involved.”
The esports group Complexity Gaming said on Twitter this afternoon that one of its members, Drini Gjoka, had been grazed by a bullet but is now “away from the scene and safe.” Dubby, another participant in the tournament, also said on Twitter that he was safe. In a follow-up tweet, he clarified that a bullet grazed his head during the shooting and that he is “traumatized and devastated.”
In a Facebook post made at 3:12 PM, the GLHF Game Bar stated that “all GLHF staff are safe and accounted for.”
The shooting was captured on the live Twitch stream of the tournament, and you can view that clip here. Warning: the clip is extremely disturbing.
UPDATE 1, 7:30pm - While the investigation is still ongoing, a statement issued by the Jacksonville Sherriff’s office believes—though they cannot confirm—that the suspect was a 24 year-old man named David Katz, from Baltimore, who was in town “for the competition”. The FBI is currently providing investigative and technical assistant, and Federal authorities are currently investigating a home in South Baltimore.
The Sheriff’s office has also confirmed that three people have been killed, with a further 11 injured, nine of them with gunshot wounds. All of the wounded are in a stable condition.
UPDATE 2, 7:45pm - Local news outlet News 4 Jax reports that “Katz, a competitive gamer, won the Madden NFL 17 Bills Championship tournament. He was registered to play in this weekend’s Jacksonville event.”
UPDATE 3, 9:20pm -
This story is developing and will be updated as we learn more.