FORT WAYNE, Ind. — A man pulled a woman off a city bus in Fort Wayne on Wednesday and fatally shot her in front of multiple witnesses before fleeing into a neighborhood where he holed up in a house with a 3-year-old during a police standoff.
The man and woman had both been riding a Citilink bus, but Fort Wayne police spokeswoman Raquel Foster said it wasn't clear whether they were companions. Nonetheless, police do not believe the shooting was random and "have a good idea who (they're) looking for," she told The Journal Gazette.
Foster later told WANE-TV that the man was barricaded in a home and holding a 3-year-old hostage. It was not clear if the child was related to the man.
The man pulled the woman, described as a young adult, off the bus about 8 a.m. and fatally shot her about 25 feet away before fleeing on foot into the surrounding neighborhood, police said. A backpack lay at the feet of the victim, whose body was covered by a sheet.
The street was busy with morning traffic, including children waiting at school bus stops, when the shooting happened, and police said there were a number of witnesses. Fort Wayne Community Schools spokeswoman Krista Stockman told WANE-TV that two elementary schools were nearby, and some children saw the shooting on their way to school. She said the schools were taking extra precautions.
Citilink General Manager Kenneth Housden said police will be reviewing video and audio equipment from the bus for their investigation.
Housden said the incident, though tragic, was an isolated one and people should continue to feel safe on Citilink buses.
"We do take safety and security very seriously and respond very quickly to any incident," he said.