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Gunman kills 1 at military recruit site

Police say a lone gunman shot two soldiers at a Little Rock site, killing one. They arrested a suspect moments later on an interstate. Police say a lone gunman shot two soldiers at a Little Rock site, killing one. They arrested a suspect moments later on an interstate. (Danny Johnston/ Associated Press)
Associated Press / June 2, 2009
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LITTLE ROCK - A man with "political and religious motives" killed a soldier just out of basic training and wounded another yesterday in a targeted attack on a military recruiting center, police said. The shootings were not believed to be part of a broader scheme.

The soldiers completed basic training within the past two weeks and were not regular recruiters, said Lieutenant Colonel Thomas F. Artis of the Oklahoma City Recruiting Battalion, which oversees the Little Rock office.

William Long, 24, of Conway, Ark., died, and Quinton Ezeagwula, 18, of Jacksonville, Ark., was wounded and in stable condition, Police Chief Stuart Thomas said.

Both men were from nearby hometowns and volunteered to work at the recruiting center to attract other locals to the military. "They can show the example, 'Here's where I was, and here is where I am,"' Artis said.

Police arrested Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammad, 23, after pulling over his car on Interstate 630 moments after the shootings at the Army-Navy Career Center in a shopping center in west Little Rock.

Police said they found an assault rifle in the vehicle.

Muhammad acted alone, the police chief said. Based on an interview with officers, Thomas said, the suspect "probably had political and religious motives for the attack."

He lived in an apartment about a mile from the recruiting center.

Thomas said Muhammad, previously known as Carlos Bledsoe, would be charged with first-degree murder, plus 15 counts of committing a terroristic act. Thomas said those counts result from the gunfire occurring near other people.