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Frightened visitors. Clinics and offices in lockdown. Omaha police swarming inside and outside the building.
For the second time in less than a year, those scenes played out at Creighton University Medical Center, where a 30-year-old man was shot Wednesday in the front lobby.
Otis Holford, the shooting victim, was in stable condition at the hospital. His injuries were not considered life-threatening.
Police identified the suspected gunman late Wednesday night as Anthony D. Green Jr., 26, of Omaha. Green was arrested on suspicion of first-degree assault, use of a weapon to commit a felony and felon in possession of a weapon.
Holford and the gunman were involved in an argument before the shooting, said Officer Michael Pecha, a police spokesman. The hospital said in a written statement that the altercation occurred in the lobby area.
The gunman bolted from the hospital and ran down 30th Street. He was caught within minutes of the shooting, which was called in to 911 at 3:36 p.m., Pecha said.
A number of law officers were already at the hospital because a Douglas County sheriff's deputy wounded in another shooting had been taken there for treatment.
Officers found a gun on the roof of a building adjacent to the hospital, but they had not yet determined whether it was the weapon used in the Creighton shooting, Pecha said.
Both Holford and Green are gang members, said a law enforcement officer with knowledge of the case.
Holford was severely injured in October when he was shot multiple times near 30th and Pratt Streets. He was found in an alley outside Club Seville.
In the shooting at Creighton in September, a 39-year-old Tekamah, Neb., man pulled a handgun on Omaha police officers and fired, wounding two of the officers. The officers returned fire, hitting the man, Jeffrey Layten, in the chest. Layten died of his injuries.
The Creighton hospital does not have metal detectors. Omaha Police Chief Alex Hayes said that he does not believe that metal detectors are a deterrent if a person is determined to do harm.
Gary Honts, president of the medical center, said in a written statement that the “safety and security of our visitors is of the utmost importance.”
He said that is why the hospital has an “active shooter” policy and procedure to respond to these incidents.
The hospital was on lockdown for about an hour after the shooting.
Drivers passing by the hospital saw a chaotic scene unfold.
Police were jumping out of vehicles, brandishing automatic rifles. At least 20 officers came to the hospital. People in the upper floors of the medical center stared out the windows.
John Soethout had just driven up to the hospital to pick up his mother, who works there as a lab technician, when he saw uniformed and plain-clothes officers with raised handguns.
He said he saw several women in maroon hospital scrubs at the entrance screaming.
“I just parked and I tried to digest the situation. ... Still at that time it wasn't clear what had just occurred,” he said.
His mother called on his cell phone to say she couldn't leave — she was in lockdown.
Rosetta Meeks visited the hospital to see a doctor and was taken to a room with several others. The door was locked.
“It was very scary ... We thought we (were) going to be there all night ... We just wanted to know what was going on.”
Larry Thompson, there to see a dermatologist, was put in a conference room with 25 to 35 others. It seemed everybody had cell phones in hand, tapping out text messages.
The hospital served refreshments — water, coffee, pop.
Margaret Thurston, 68, of Schleswig, Iowa, was in her husband's room on the fourth floor.
She walked to the elevator to go to the first floor to get something to drink.
A nurse gave her a simple instruction: You're not going anywhere.
World-Herald staff writers Andrew J. Nelson, Jonathon Braden, Erin Grace, Emerson Clarridge and Todd Cooper contributed to this report.