Home Emergency Management News EDM Monday Briefing: Texas Courthouse Shooting, Subway Bomb Blast in Russia

EDM Monday Briefing: Texas Courthouse Shooting, Subway Bomb Blast in Russia


Emergency and disaster management for April 3, 2017: A suspect opened fire early Monday on a Harris County, Texas courthouse, shooting one constable, a subway bomb blast in St. Petersburg kills at least 10, two people are dead, including one child after a tornado on Sunday in Alabama, severe weather and possible tornadoes forecast for Monday across the Southeast, flash flooding across Mississippi resulted in emergency water rescues in Rankin, at least 250 people have died with another nearly 200 missing from a mudslide in Mocoa, Colombia, a young girl from an Amber Alert issued on Sunday in North Carolina is found safe after a police chase in Washington, D.C., Walmart surveillance footage captures former Tennessee teacher and student he is suspected of kidnapping, and a carbon monoxide leak kills one boy and sickens eight other individuals, including five children.

  1. A local school and courthouse were placed on lockdown after a constable was shot at a Texas courthouse early Monday morning. The incident occurred in Baytown, Texas, at the back of the courthouse in Harris County when an unidentified suspect opened fire and hit the constable from Pct 3. The deputy was taken by Life Flight to the hospital and a search for the suspect is currently underway.
  2. Russian authorities are reporting two blasts in a Russian subway in St. Petersburg, with one explosion that has left at least 10 people dead and many others injured. The device appeared to be filled with shrapnel, and the explosion reportedly blew up one of the train carriages at the Sennaya Ploschad station. An evacuation of the area is currently underway. It is uncertain at this time if the blasts were caused by terrorism but the incident is currently under investigation.
  3. Severe weather forecast for Monday has residents across the Southeast concerned after a little girl and her mother were killed by a tornado on Sunday in Louisiana. A 110 mph tornado flipped the family's trailer home in Breaux Bridge, a town situated approximately 50 miles west of Baton Rouge, killing the mother and her 3-year-old daughter. The storm system developing Monday is predicted to stretch from parts of Mississippi into South Carolina, with the strongest weather placing southern Alabama at the highest risk for tornadoes.
  4. Strong storms in Mississippi early Monday have caused flash flooding that led to the emergency water evacuations of at least 30 people from their homes in the town of Rankin. Other water rescues are reported to be occurring at an apartment building in the same town. Schools in several districts in Alabama are closing early to prepare for the severe weather forecast for the state later in the day. The worst weather is set to impact parts of Mississippi into Alabama, and Alabama's governor has asked residents to keep phones charged and be alert for changing weather conditions, including the issuance of tornado warnings. 
  5. A mudslide in Mocoa, Colombia over the weekend occurred while residents slept as a sudden torrential rainfall caused three rivers to overflow their banks. The muddy rock and debris filled water poured through the town, crushing homes, sweeping away cars, and ripping trees out by their roots. At least 250 people have died including 43 children, and another 178 are estimated to be missing. The president of Colombia has declared a state of emergency for the disaster area while rescuers continue searching for missing residents.
  6. An Amber Alert issued on Sunday afternoon in Charlotte, North Carolina for 11-year-old Arieyana Forney ended in a short police chase in Washington, D.C. on Sunday night. The suspect, Curtis Atkinson, the girl's uncle, was arrested after fleeing from police and crashing into another vehicle. The child's grandparents and legal guardians were found dead in the home after a fire that was apparently set and authorities suspect Atkinson of their murder.
  7. Surveillance footage from an Oklahoma City Walmart captured Ted Cummins, a former teacher from Tennessee wanted for the alleged kidnapping of one of his former students, entering the store on March 15th with the teenager. The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation has confirmed that surveillance footage captured by the Walmart store is that of the teacher from Tennessee, although his appearance has seemingly been altered with darkened hair.  He is wanted in connection with the alleged kidnapping of 15-year-old Elizabeth Thomas and an ongoing Amber Alert for the missing girl, first issued on March 14, remains in effect.
  8. A carbon monoxide leak at a hotel pool in Niles, Michigan killed a 13-year-old boy on Saturday. The boy was found lying unresponsive on the pool deck and taken to an area hospital where he was pronounced dead. A total of eight other children and five police officers were affected by the leak and taken to two area hospitals. Authorities are blaming the leak on an improperly vented pool heater.

Kimberly Arsenault Kimberly Arsenault serves as an intern at the Cleveland/Bradley County Emergency Management Agency where she works on plan revisions and special projects. Previously, Kimberly spent 15 years in commercial and business aviation. Her positions included station manager at the former Midwest Express Airlines, as well as corporate flight attendant, inflight manager, and charter flight coordinator. Kimberly currently holds a master's degree in emergency and disaster management from American Public University.