Four of five officers injured in Aurora shooting released from hospital

Four of the five police officers wounded in Friday's mass shooting in Aurora have been released from area hospitals, as the investigation into the deadly spree that left six dead continued Sunday, police said.

Five civilians along with the gunman were killed and one other was injured after the shooter, a factory worker at Henry Pratt Co. in Aurora, opened fire during a termination meeting, authorities said. All the victims were employees of the manufacturing plant at 614 Archer Ave.

Police were dispatched to the building at 1:24 p.m. Friday, and the first officers arrived four minutes later. Five officers were struck by gunfire and taken to area hospitals with injuries that were not life-threatening; a sixth one was treated for a minor knee injury, police said.

Aurora police said Sunday, including on its Facebook page, that the officer still being treated in the hospital was a 39-year-old officer who suffered a gunshot wound to his lower extremity. A 24-year-old officer with shrapnel wounds to his upper extremity also was still being treated early Sunday but was later released.

The other officers released from the hospital were a 52-year-old officer shot in his upper extremity, a 52-year-old officer struck in his lower extremity, and a 53-year-old officer also shot in his lower extremity, Rowley said.

The gunman was killed in the shootout with police, authorities said.

Police identified the civilians killed as Trevor Wehner, 21, of DeKalb, a human resources intern on his first day on the job and set to graduate in May from Northern Illinois University; Clayton Parks, 32, of Elgin, the human resources manager hired last November; Josh Pinkard, 37, of Oswego, the plant manager who transferred there last spring after a dozen years in Alabama; Russell Beyer, 47, of Yorkville, a mold operator for some two decades and union chairman; and Vicente Juarez, 54, of Oswego, a stock room attendant and fork lift operator since 2006.

Autopsy results confirmed all five victims died of multiple gunshot wounds, the Kane County coroner's office said Sunday.

Elgin Mayor David Kaptain said a police department chaplain visited Saturday with Parks' family, which asked for privacy.

"Our sympathy from the city goes out to everybody involved," Kaptain said.

Authorities believe the shooter, 45-year-old Gary Montez Martin, a 15-year employee of the factory, acted alone. Autopsy results confirmed he died of multiple gunshot wounds.

Rowley said police are working on releasing 911 and radio communications related to the shooting, but that likely won't happen before Monday.

Hundreds joined a prayer vigil Sunday afternoon outside the Henry Pratt Co. It was hosted by city officials, the Aurora Prayer Coalition, area churches and Crosses for Losses.

Indivisible Aurora also is planning a vigil at 1 p.m. Monday at the Water Street Mall, 44 E. Downer Place. It will include a moment of silence at 1:24 p.m. - the time of the shooting Friday.

The shooter lived on the 1900 block of Selmarten Road in Aurora. Police say he was convicted of felony aggravated assault in Mississippi in 1995 - a crime that led to his Illinois Firearm Owner's Identification card being revoked in 2014.

Police said they are investigating how and why the shooter was able to hold onto the .40-caliber Smith & Wesson handgun used in the shooting Friday. Authorities have a record of Illinois State Police sending the shooter a letter instructing him to voluntarily relinquish the firearm.

The shooter was arrested by Aurora police six times for traffic and domestic violence issues - the last one in 2008 for violating an order of protection, officials said. He was last arrested in 2017 by Oswego police for disorderly conduct and criminal damage to property.

• Daily Herald staff writers Christopher Placek and Kaitlyn Smith contributed to this report.

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  Crosses were placed outside the Henry Pratt Co. manufacturing warehouse at 641 Archer Ave. in Aurora, where an employee who was being fired killed five employees and wounded five police officers and another employee. The shooter was killed in a shootout with police, authorities said. Brian Hill/
  Three of the five officers wounded in Friday's mass shooting in Aurora have been released from area hospitals as the investigation continued Sunday, police said. Bev Horne/
  Five employees of Henry Pratt Co. in Aurora people were killed and one was injured after an employee who was being fired opened fire Friday afternoon. Five police officers were injured in the shootout in which the gunman also was killed, police said. Bev Horne/
  Mourners overcome with grief place a flowers at the crosses outside the Henry Pratt Co. in Aurora on Sunday in memory of the five employees killed on Friday. Jeff Knox/
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