Shocked neighbors of Temple gunman say he was a nice guy
By Christine McCarthy and Brandon Hartman
TEMPLE- A Temple Police officer was forced to shoot a man who took hospital staff members hostage at Scott and White Hospital in Temple on Sunday night.
Larry Wayne Robards, 54, entered the treatment area of the Scott and White Emergency Room around 6:45 p.m. and showed his gun, forcing the three hostages into a common area, according to Temple Police Sgt. Brad Hunt.
A source told News Channel 25 Robards came to the hospital in a wheelchair but was not a patient there.
That source said a security guard who was being held hostage begged Robards to let two nurses go and let him take their place.
After minutes of negotiating, Officer Joseph Robertson noticed one hostage struggling to grab Robards' gun and determined the other hostages and bystanders were in imminent danger, so he fired at least once at Robards, ending the hostage situation.
Robards received treatment before he died at 7:45 on Sunday night. The Texas Rangers are now investigating the incident, while Temple Police assist.
No hostages or bystanders were injured.
According to Robards' Facebook page, he had been in and out of the hospital since he lost a leg 12 years ago in his battle with Lupus.
CNN reports that Robards' son had stated that his father had gone to the hospital that day seeking stronger pain medication after he ran out last week.
Robards' neighbors were also stunned that a man they considered to be such a "friendly guy" would do something like this.
Scott & White issued an official statement regarding the incident Monday morning. It reads:
"The Scott & White Memorial Hospital Emergency Department is today fully accessible following Sunday's tragic incident. We are gratified that our system for handling these types of situations worked and was successful in containing the incident immediately.
We are all safe, and continue to express our gratitude for the outstanding efforts of our hospital security team, and the Temple Police department for the protection they provided.
Now we continue our efforts for the ongoing safety of patients and staff. Staff involved in the incident are receiving counseling and leadership will meet to debrief and evaluate our existing processes for these situations, with focus on emergency department safety and security."
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