PONCE, PUERTO RICO — A police officer took three of his colleagues hostage and fatally shot them in an apparent workplace rampage on Monday in Ponce, Puerto Rico, authorities said.
Officer Guarionex Candelario Rivera reportedly entered a lieutenant's office at a police headquarters on Monday to complain about a disciplinary action that was filed against him, reported Latin Times.
When the lieutenant was unable to handle it immediately, Rivera took her, a male commander and a policewoman hostage inside the office, Puerto Rico police spokesman Axel Valencia said.
Rivera, a 19-year veteran, had was stripped of his weapon nearly two years ago, but it was returned after he received a psychological evaluation.
Hostage negotiators had begun speaking with Rivera when he opened fire on the hostages. The victims were identified as Lieutenant Luz Soto Segarra, Commander Frank Roman Rodriguez and policewoman Rosario Hernandez de Hoyos. All three victims had been with the department for more than a decade.
Police then stormed into the building and arrested Rivera, who was injured in the exchange and remains hospitalized, Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla told reporters.
Authorities evacuated the station when a suspicious package was found inside Rivera's vehicle. A full investigation into the details of his motives are still underway.