According to Macerata police, the shootings on Saturday morning were carried out in different parts of the town, including near the train station, leading to the injuries of six people, mostly African migrants. Police suspected that the shootings were racially motivated.
“Shots fired in Macerata. People injured. Police operation under way. Stay out of the way and avoid open places,” the local police said in a posting on its official Twitter account.
The shootings began at 11:00 a.m. local time (1000 GMT), and two hours later, police said an Italian had been arrested on suspicion of opening fire on foreigners from a vehicle. State television Rai said the suspect was a white Italian man who came from Macerata. Reports said at least one woman was among the wounded. Four of the injured are reportedly in a critical condition.
Earlier in the day, Macerata Mayor Romano Carancini had announced a shutdown of schools and offices while the armed assailant remained at large in the town, located about 200 kilometers east of the capital Rome.
“There’s an armed man in a car shooting in town. We stopped public transport. We asked schools to keep children inside until further notice. It is recommended not to pick them up until further notice,” he said in a Facebook post.
The shootings took place just days after the amputated body of a young Italian woman was discovered concealed in two suitcases near Macerata. A 29-year-old Nigerian migrant was arrested in connection with the horrible death.
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