A California Marine base locked down on Tuesday due to an active shooter situation. One individual was taken to a medical facility with a self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to a report by CBS News Los Angeles. The Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center in Twentynine Palms, California, is now back to normal.
The base was under a shelter-in-place order when gunshots were reported early on Tuesday morning. Around 6:30 a.m. PT, military police were called in response to gunfire. The area was cordoned off for about three hours, at which point the U.S. Marines confirmed that only one person was injured. The incident remains under investigation, but so far, very few details have been released.
The individual is currently being treated and will be transported to a medical facility. There are no other injuries reported at this time. This incident is under investigation. (2/2)— U.S. Marines (@USMC) July 7, 2020
The Marines told reporters that there were no other injuries in this incident, and the Air Ground Combat Center is now considered safe. The base is in the Mojave Desert, about 150 miles east of Los Angeles. It is the largest U.S. Marine Corps base in the world, with 932 square miles of space.
The official U.S. Marines Twitter account posted updates about the situation throughout the morning, garnering more notice than usual on its tweets. Many commenters wondered what could drive a shooter to attack a military base full of soldiers. Some even expressed pity after hearing that the person had apparently survived a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
"I guarantee there were warning signs that got ignored," one person tweeted. Another added: "I hope the situation is getting under control, stay alert Marines it's been a bad year."
Much like the rest of the world, the U.S. Military has been struggling to cope with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, throwing many of its policies and protocols into disarray. Because the virus is so physically debilitating, it has taken an extreme toll on service members when it breaks out on military premises. Back in May, there was even concern that COVID-19 survivors would be disqualified from military service due to the lasting damage the virus can have on the respiratory system.
"During the screening process, a reported history of confirmed COVID-19 will be annotated, 'Considered disqualifying,'" read a memo at the time, according to a report by The Military Times. Since then, the Defense Department has updated its guidelines, allowing coronavirus survivors to be considered for military service as usual. Still, the incident left little doubt that the crisis will have a lasting impact on every aspect of life.