MEDFORD, N.Y. — A gunman shot four people inside a pharmacy in a New York suburb Sunday morning, killing everyone inside the store in what police said looked like a robbery gone wrong.
The massacre happened at about 10:20 a.m. inside a family-owned pharmacy in a small cluster of medical offices in Medford, a middle-class hamlet on Long Island about 60 miles east of New York City.
Police rushed to the scene after getting a 911 call from someone in the pharmacy’s parking lot. When they arrived, they found two employees and two customers dead, said Suffolk County Police Department’s Chief of Detectives, Dominick Varrone. No one inside the shop survived.
The pharmacy, Haven Drugs, had opened for business at 10 a.m., and Varrone said investigators’ initial belief was that a single gunman was responsible for the bloodbath, and that the motive was robbery. Just how the shooting unfolded, and why, were unclear, he said.
The shooter fled the pharmacy, and no suspects were in custody.
Officials weren’t immediately releasing additional details about the shooting, or the names or ages of the victims.
A call left for the man listed in state records as the pharmacy’s owner and chief pharmacist, Vinoda Kudchadkar, wasn’t immediately returned.
Police had the streets around the pharmacy blocked off with crime tape. Officers could be seen scanning the ground for evidence, and as of late afternoon the bodies had yet to be removed.
News of the shootings stunned neighbors, who said they heard the commotion after police arrived, but saw nothing of the crime.
“It’s absolutely crazy. There are no words,” said Scott Radice, who lives four houses up the street from Haven Drugs and said he has been a customer for 15 years. “I’m hoping they had cameras in the pharmacy so they can catch this guy.”
“This is a family business. Everyone goes there. It is our neighborhood pharmacy,” said neighbor Kathy Culhane. “If you had a problem with prescriptions, he’d go to bat for you,” she said of the owner, who wasn’t at the pharmacy when the shooting happened.