Upset Employee Kills Himself, Eight Co-Workers

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A disgruntled employee opened fire at a Manchester, Conn., warehouse Tuesday, killing eight people and then himself.

The gunman, identified by a company executive as Omar Thornton, had been caught on tape stealing beer from Hartford Distributors and was due to meet with supervisors when the shootings began.

A company executive said the man was asked to resign. He refused, then started firing a gun.

Thornton killed eight co-workers before turning and shooting himself. At least two other people were wounded, but are expected to recover.

Monday, Thornton spent time with his girlfriend of eight years, but gave no sign that he was planning the attack, said Joanne Hannah -- the girlfriend's mother.

Hannah added that after shooting his co-workers, Thornton called his mother.

"He wanted to say goodbye and he loved everybody," she said.

According to Hannah, Thornton had complained or racial harrassment at his job and said he found a picture of a noose and racial epithet on the bathroom wall, but supervisors did not respond to his concerns. A union official said he was not aware of any such complaint filed by Thornton.

"It's got nothing to do with race," company official Christopher Roos said. "This is a disgruntled employee who shot a bunch of people."

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