HONOLULU (AP) -- In the latest outburst of workplace violence, a Xerox copier repairman shot and killed seven co-workers in his office building Tuesday, then fled in a company van, authorities said. Two hours later, police surrounded the suspect and began trying
to talk him into surrendering.
The gunfire erupted shortly after 8 a.m. (1 p.m. EST) in an industrial section of Honolulu, far from the Waikiki tourist district. Five victims were found dead in a conference room and two other bodies were found nearby. All had been shot with a 9 mm handgun, authorities said.
Police identified the gunman as 40-year-old Byran Uesugi, who joined Xerox Corp. in 1984. As a customer service engineer, he traveled to various sites to service and repair printers and
copiers, Xerox said. "It appears as though it was a disgruntled employee who snapped," Mayor Jeremy Harris said.
Authorities said Uesugi had up to 17 weapons registered in his name. "This could have been much, much worse," the mayor said. By late morning in Makiki Heights, a residential neighborhood near the shooting scene, negotiators were talking with the suspect
through a bullhorn. He could be seen pacing back and forth outside the van. "We are hopeful we're going to be able to negotiate a peaceful settlement," Deputy Police Chief Mike Carvalho said.
Police cordoned off a half-mile area around the vehicle, which is near the Hawaii Nature Center. About 60 fourth-graders and 12 chaperones were on a nature hike when police told them to get to higher ground. About 10 homes were also evacuated.
Xerox employees were taken across the street from the building to be questioned by police and helped by counselors. Another Xerox
building, in downtown Honolulu, was evacuated in case the gunman headed that way.
All seven victims were male Xerox employees who were shot on the second floor of the two-story building, authorities said. They ranged in age from 33 to 58. "It's a shock for all of us. We have such a safe community with almost no violent crime," the mayor said. "To have someone snap like this and murder seven people is just absolutely appalling."
Xerox employs 92,700 people worldwide and 148 people in Honolulu. It was the latest of several workplace killings across the
United States this year.
In Pelham, Ala., 34-year-old Alan Miller was charged with killing two co-workers at their office Aug. 5, then killing a third person at a company where he used to work.
Just one week earlier, Mark Barton, 44, killed nine people and wounded 13 others at two brokerage firms in Atlanta, then killed
himself. He had earlier killed his wife and two children.