A shocking attack on a clinic in Buffalo, Minnesota involved multiple bombs and at least one active shooter. Police have one suspect in custody, but no one knows quite yet whether more were involved or what the motive might be. “This is a major, critical incident,” reports Paul Blume for the local Fox News affiliate, with multiple casualties, including victims in critical conditions:
Gunshots erupted at a health clinic in Wright County late Tuesday morning followed by a bomb exploding, and at least five people were reported to be wounded by the gunfire.
The scene is the Allina Health Clinic in Buffalo on Crossroads Campus Drive, according to police, who were called there about 10:55 a.m.
Up to five people are said to be wounded, and a male suspect has been detained, according to emergency dispatch audio.
A female with three gunshot wounds was taken by air ambulance to North Memorial Health Hospital in Robbinsdale, where two others also were transported, emergency medical personnel were heard saying on dispatch audio. Two others were taken to Allina-operated Buffalo Hospital, the audio continued.
About 30 minutes later, a bomb went off in the family medicine and urgent care clinic, the dispatch audio revealed. That explosion forced responding emergency medical personnel to relocate, the audio continued.
Police also responded to a local Super 8 Motel nearby the clinic on a report of a suspicious package. That was a “high suspicion” response, which indicates a serious threat. Thus far Allina doesn’t have a statement on the events, but they’re probably trying to assess the situation first.
So far there doesn’t appear to be any more information on the story. For those wondering about Buffalo, it’s about an hour or so west of the Twin Cities, relatively off the beaten path. It wouldn’t be considered part of the Metro area, but it’s not all that far from it either. It’s a small town, under 20,000 people as of 2019, and Wikipedia lists it as the 65th largest city in the state.
I’ll have more as events dictate, so keep an eye on this post.
Update: I’m watching WCCO’s live coverage, but not much more has been revealed. No one knows what the perp’s motive was, and we might not know much more until 3 pm, when police will hold a press conference. Minneapolis is sending its bomb squad to assist clearing the facility.
Update, 1:54 pm CT: I moved over to Fox 9’s live coverage, but still not a lot to report. It appears that the FBI and the state Bureau of Criminal Apprehension are now participating in the investigation, so far just in support. If the motive is political, the FBI will take over the investigation. Gov. Tim Walz will address the media shortly. In the meantime, the bomb squads and bomb-sniffing dogs have arrived.
Update, 2:28 CT: Walz only confirmed that they believe this was the work of a single perp, but didn’t add much to our knowledge on any other score. Fox 9 reports that a local neighborhood has been blocked off by police, and they believe that action is related to the attack on the Allina clinic.
Update, 4:14 pm CT: It’s not political — it’s personal:
A 67-year-old man unhappy with healthcare he received shot and seriously wounded five people at a clinic Tuesday in Buffalo, Minn., in what authorities described as a “horrible scene” where potential explosives were also discovered.
Gregory Paul Ulrich, 67, of Buffalo, was jailed after the 10:55 a.m. shooting at Allina Health Clinic in Buffalo on Crossroads Campus Drive. Police said they’ve had “multiple contacts” with Ulrich dating to 2003. He had a history of being unhappy with healthcare he had received, said Buffalo Police Chief Pat Budke.
“The history we have with this individual makes it most likely that this incident was targeted at that facility or someone in that facility,” Budke said. “Because of that previous contact with him, this was an isolated incident or only directed at people within [the clinic].”
Police found suspicious devices both in the clinic and the nearby Super 8 Motel where Ulrich was staying. It’s unclear whether they detonated.
Good Lord. If you’ve spent 18 years griping about your healthcare, maybe find another clinic. Let’s hope this guy spends the rest of his life getting his healthcare from a prison infirmary.