Grief-stricken employees gather together to cope with Tuesday's tragic shooting inside the Valley Protein plant. Company officials speak out about the victims and the suspected shooter.
One day after tragedy struck inside the Valley Protein plant, employees are trying to recover.
Valley Protein President, Bob Coyle says, "The general feeling is just that they were confused on why it might have happened. Nobody knows why it happened, there were no arguments pursued."
The plant was closed for business today while management tried to pick up the pieces. Grief counselors were on hand to help workers cope with yesterday's fatal shooting.
"I think they just wanted some reassurance that things are gonna be okay, and we're working hard to make sure they are," says Coyle.
42-year-old Lawrence Jones snapped during his normal shift at the plant. Police say he methodically shot four co-workers and then took his own life.
Salavador Diaz,32 was pronounced dead at the scene. Manuel Verdin,34 later died at the hospital. 28-year-old Arnulfo Connriquez remains in critical condition.
Company officials say two of the victims were hired just last Wednesday.
"A lot of the other employees spoke out nicely about all the employees that were shot and both injured and that nobody ever did anything to provoke anything."
Jones was an man with a criminal past dating back to 1988. In 1996, he was sentenced to 13 years in prison for felony robbery and carrying a firearm. In 2002, he was charged with vehicle theft and a felony DUI. The parolee was hired through an employment agency 14 months ago. The company was aware of his history.
Michelle Coyle, Valley Protein says "We knew it wasn't a violent criminal past and that's one thing that we don't accept is someone with a violent criminal past, so that's the big difference. We try to give people another chance at life."
Plant officials and employees will now remember the lives lost, as they try to move on.
The plant will re-open Thursday morning for business.
Employees are trying to organize a candlelight vigil for the victims at 7:00 p.m. Wednesday night in front of the plant.