Updated 11:46 a.m., 7/24
GRAND PRAIRIE (CBSDFW.COM) – A shooter opened fire at a skating rink during a private family event Saturday night, killing five and wounding four before fatally shooting himself, Grand Prairie Police spokesman John Brimmer said.
Brimmer said Tan Do, 35, was attending a private birthday party for one of his two children at the Forum Roller World at 1900 S. Great Southwest Parkway around 7:15 p.m. Saturday.
He pulled a pistol and started shooting after getting into an argument with his estranged wife, Trini Do, 29.
“The couple had been involved in ongoing marital problems and it is believed that this led to the shooting,” Brimmer said in a release.
Trini Do was killed in the shooting along with her two sisters – Lynn Ta, 16, and Michelle Ta, 28 – her brother Hien Ta, 21, and her sister-in-law, Thuy Nguyen, 25, Brimmer said Sunday.
Brimmer said the suspect targeted his wife and her family during the shooting.
“The two children of the couple were unharmed and are with other family members at this time,” Brimmer said Sunday.
Tan Do shot himself in the head and was taken to Parkland Memorial Hospital where he was pronounced dead, said Grand Prairie Police Chief Steve Dye.
Including the gunman, six people were killed. Three were wounded and taken to area hospitals from the roller rink. The fourth victim arrived at a hospital by themselves with a gunshot wound. Police quickly confirmed it was related to the shooting.
Those injured are expected to survive their injuries, Brimmer said. A police statement issued Sunday did not identify those wounded.
“It appears to be a domestic situation at this point, that’s our initial findings, and it appears the suspect did die from a self-inflicted gun wound,” Dye told the media about two hours after the incident.
Brimmer said about 30 friends and family members attended the private party. The roller rink was not open to the public at that time, and no employees were targeted or hurt in the shooting, Brimmer added.
Nearby witnesses reported seeing individuals fleeing the skating rink, some of whom still had their skates on.
“You could tell they were in a hurry to get out of there,” said Aaron Feldt, who was across the street at a bowling alley when the shooting happened. “There were kids still with rollerblades on, people barefoot.”
On Sunday, the Associated Press reported Forum Roller World owner Walt Hendrick pushed children out of the way when Tan Do started shooting. He said he was about 40 feet away from him and that Tan Do told his children to leave before he opened fire.
Hendrick added he will reopen the rink Sunday “to show that skating is still a fun and safe activity for parents and kids.”
Many Grand Prairie residents gathered near the skating rink, saying they were stunned that a mass shooting took place there.
“It’s a roller place for skating, for kids, stuff like that happens in the streets, not here,” said Byron Raspberry, a Grand Prairie resident with children ages 4 to 15-years-old. “There’s nobody off in there that I thought would even have a gun.”
The Grand Prairie Police Department and the Tarrant County Medical Examiner are investigating, Dye said. Crisis counselors were on scene for witnesses late into the night.
“Certainly our thoughts and prayers go out to all of the victims and their families and their witnesses,” Dye said. “The Grand Prairie Police Department is offering every resource to help heal in this process.”
On December 22, 2010, Trini Do asked the court for a protection order against her husband, saying he drug her into a closet and threatened her with a gun. In November, she said he drug her into the kitchen and slammed his knee into her.
As their children watched, Trini Do said her husband “got all the guns out” and threatened to shoot anyone who arrived at their home to intervene.
But in January, against the advice of a prosecutor in the family violence unit of the district attorney’s office, Trini Do again had the order dismissed.