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Hospital Gunman Kills 1, Wounds 5

February 5, 1998

WASHINGTON (AP) _ A gunman opened fired inside the Washington Cancer Institute Thursday, killing a cancer patient and wounding five people before fleeing.

The gunman waited in the lobby of the cancer institute until the victim, a 24-year-old man who was a cancer outpatient at the institute, arrived about 11 a.m. The gunman then began shooting, police said.

``It appears the deceased was the intended target,″ said police spokesman Sgt. Joe Gentile. The gunman ``stood over his intended victim and fired multiple times.″

The dead man’s name was being withheld pending family notification.

Among those suffering minor injuries in the shooting were a 77-year-old volunteer who was shot in the leg and a 74-year-old patient who suffered a graze wound to the head.

The institute is on the campus of the 907-bed Washington Hospital Center near Howard and Catholic universities in the city’s Northwest quadrant.

An armed hospital security guard was within 100 feet of the shooting but did not have time to react, officials said.

Hospital President Ken Samet said the facility had already begun reviewing security measures after the Jan. 13 slaying of 50-year-old Sheryl Crandell, an administrator at Prince George’s County Hospital Center in nearby suburban Maryland.

``This is not a lockup,″ Samet said. ``This is not the Pentagon. ... Hospitals by definition have to have open access to treat patients.″

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