A gunman fatally shot three men at a business meeting Monday night before exchanging gunfire with police and committing suicide, police said.
Another man was critically injured with a gunshot wound to the abdomen, and two other men had been bound with duct tape but were not seriously injured, Deputy Commissioner Richard Ross said.
The gunman appeared to get upset at a board meeting for a company that might have been an investment firm or a marketing company, Ross said. Police were unsure of the name of the company and say the man might have been an investor.
The shooting took place in a conference room at the Philadelphia Naval Business Center, part of the old Philadelphia Navy Yard, police said. Ross described the scene as “utter chaos.”
“This is a tragic situation,” Ross said, “one you never hope will hit Philadelphia.”
Police received a 911 call at about 8:30 p.m. reporting a shooting in a building at the business park formerly known as the Navy Yard.
The gunman, who had a semiautomatic handgun, got into an argument about “some issue about money” with others at the board meeting, police said.
After the gunman shot the men in the conference room and duct-taped the two others, he shot at police, who returned fire. He then went behind a door and shot himself, police said.
One of the duct-taped men informed police that the gunman had shot himself, Ross said.
The Philadelphia Navy Shipyard was one of the Navy’s busiest shipbuilders during World War II, but since those years, much of the commercial shipbuilding industry has moved to Japan and South Korea, where production costs are lower.
After 1970, the yard only refurbished military vessels, and it closed in 1995.
Two years later, Kvaerner resumed commercial shipbuilding in a portion of the shipyard, and other areas have been converted for business and office use.