(CNN) – At least five people were murdered Wednesday in what authorities call a “mass shooting” in a house in York County, South Carolina.
Among the victims of the shooting near Rock Hill are a doctor, his wife and their two grandchildren, the York County Sheriff’s Office said in a tweet. The family was “very prominent and well known” in the county, said Trent Faris, a York County Sheriff’s spokesman.
Police were called to the scene after reports of a shooting at 4:45 PM.
Dr. Robert Lesslie and his wife, Barbara Lesslie, were found in the house and died of gunshot wounds, as did their two grandchildren. Gastonia’s James Lewis worked on the house and died of gunshot wounds, ”the sheriff’s office said.
According to the York County Coroner’s Office, the grandchildren were between 5 and 9 years old.
The doctor had been practicing in the area since 1981
During the press conference after the shooting, Faris said that he lived in the area all his life and that “Dr. Lesslie was my growing doctor.”
Dr. Lesslie is one of those people everyone knows. He founded the Riverview Medical Center in Rock Hill and has been an important part of Rock Hill for years, ”said Faris.
In addition to the five people who died, another person was taken to hospital with “serious gunshot wounds,” said Faris, who described the incident as a mass shooting.
“This is a very tragic, tragic situation and the family is asking that they respect their privacy at this time,” said Faris.
Lesslie was the founder of Riverview House Calls & Riverview Hospice and Palliative Care and has been practicing in Rock Hill since 1981, according to his website. On a personal page, Lesslie wrote that he and his wife had been married for 40 years, raised four children, and had nine grandchildren.
“In my spare time, I like to write, play golf, hunt, grow fruit and hops, and play bagpipes,” says the biography page.
There is a suspect
Regarding the suspect, Faris said, “We have found the person we think is responsible and we are with him right now.”
“That’s all I can say about that suspect,” added the spokesman.
When asked if the suspect was a neighbor, Faris said, “He lives on the same road.”
A tweet from the sheriff’s office says authorities found the suspect “in a nearby house.”
“There is no active threat to the community,” the sheriff’s office said. “Detectives are still in the area and are issuing a search warrant and investigating this tragic event.”