AURORA, Ill. — Police have identified the five people gunned down by a co-worker who was being fired in Aurora on Friday.
The shooting began at 1:24 p.m. at Henry Pratt Company, a 29,000-square-foot manufacturing warehouse at 641 Archer Ave. in west suburban Aurora, according to Aurora Police Chief Kristen Ziman.
Police said gunman Gary Martin, 45, likely brought his .40-caliber Smith & Wesson handgun to work because he knew he was being fired from his job of 15 years. Martin, who was convicted in 1995 of aggravated assault, was not licensed to own or carry a gun.
The deceased victims were identified Saturday as:
- Clayton Parks, of Elgin, Ill., a human resources manager who began working at Henry Pratt in November;
- Trevor Wehner, 21, of DeKalb, Ill., a human resources intern and student at Northern Illinois University;
- Russell Beyer, of Yorkville, Ill., a union chairman who worked at Henry Pratt for more than 20 years;
- Vicente Juarez, of Oswego, Ill., a stock room attendant and fork lift operator who had been with the company since 2006;
- and Josh Pinkard, of Oswego, Ill., a plant manager from Alabama who moved to Aurora last year.
A sixth employee and five Aurora police officers — all men — were shot and expected to survive.
Aurora officials created a GoFundMe campaign to raise money for victims' families. On Saturday, vigils were held outside the shooting site. Additional services were scheduled for Sunday.
According to Ziman, Martin began shooting at 1:24 p.m. Friday when he was fired inside a meeting room at the Aurora industrial complex — fatally shooting three people inside the room. The two other deceased victims were shot nearby.
Martin in 1995 was convicted of felony aggravated assault in Mississippi. Records show he served less than two years in prison.
In 2014, police said, he successfully applied for an Illinois Firearm Owner's Identification (FOID) card and bought a .40-caliber Smith & Wesson handgun. When Martin tried to procure a concealed carry license that same year, the Mississippi conviction came up during a background check. Martin was denied a concealed carry license, police said, and his FOID card was revoked. Authorities never confiscated his gun.
Ziman said Martin was previously arrested by Aurora police officers on six different occasions, including for domestic violence and traffic incidents. His last arrest in Aurora was for violating an order of protection in 2008.
His most recent arrest was in 2017 in Oswego, Ill., for disorderly conduct and criminal damage to property.
Ziman said responding officers on Friday arrived at the shooting scene four minutes after the first 911 calls were placed. Martin shot and wounded five officers during initial exchanges of gunfire. He then retreated into the building, where police found him roughly 90 minutes later. He again fired at officers, officials said, and was fatally shot.
The five wounded officers are expected to survive. They were identified Saturday as:
- a 39-year-old man with 13 years of service
- a 52-year-old man with 25 years of service
- a 52-year-old man with 24 years of service
- a 53-year-old man with 30 years of service
- and a 24-year-old man with just under four years of service.
A sixth officer, a 23-year-old man with two years on the job, was treated for a minor injury sustained during the incident. Ziman said it was not related to gunfire.
Vitalant blood centers are asking people to donate blood in coming days. Centers across the country shipped 70 “blood components” to the Chicago area Friday. Blood drives were scheduled for Saturday in Bolingbrook, and Monday in St. Charles. For more information, visit vitalant.org.