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Andrew Gillum heads back to Tallahassee after yoga studio shooting

Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum said he was leaving the campaign trail and returning to the capital Friday night after news of a shooting in a yoga studio that claimed the lives of at least one victim and the gunman.

“I’m deeply appreciative of law enforcement’s quick response to the shooting at the yoga facility in Tallahassee today,” the Democratic gubernatorial candidate tweeted shortly after 6:30 p.m.

“No act of gun violence is acceptable,” he added. “I’m in close communication with law enforcement officials and will be returning to Tallahassee tonight.”

The gunman, still unidentified by police as of 8 p.m., killed one person and critically injured four others some time between 5 p.m. and 5:45 p.m. before killing himself at a Hot Yoga studio, the Tallahassee Democrat reported.

The shooting took place in a shopping center in the city’s Midtown neighborhood, at the intersection of Thomasville, Betton and Bradford roads.

City Commissioner Scott Maddox soon posted on his Facebook page: “In my public service career I have had to be on some bad scenes. This is the worst. Please pray.”

Gov. Rick Scott‘s office issued a revised daily schedule, showing he had phone conversations Friday evening about the attack with FDLE Commissioner Rick Swearingen; Leon County Sheriff Walt McNeil, who also was Tallahassee’s police chief; and current Police Chief Michael DeLeo.

“All indications are this is the act of a single person,” DeLeo told reporters. “There is no immediate threat to our community.”

Businesses in or near the shopping center, like Riccardo’s Restaurant, posted their status on Facebook: “John (the owner), our employees and customers are safe. I can’t say anything else right now.”

Haute Headz Salon also posted all were safe: “We are praying for the victims and their families … so incredibly heart breaking.”

Updated 9 p.m. — The Democrat reported that Democratic state Rep. Kristin Jacobs of Broward County was a “barside witness” to the shooting.


Jacobs was sitting in Bar on Betton, near the yoga studio, after taking part in an “active shooter training,” the paper said.

The lawmaker credited an unidentified man whom she said rushed the shooter and then was pistol-whipped by him before the man turned the gun on himself.

“Many people are alive because (of) this guy,” Jacobs said.

Her district includes Parkland, where a former student shot and killed 17 students and staff at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School earlier this year.

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