Nearly three days after a shooting inside a North Baltimore methadone clinic that left two dead, including a man who worked there, the executive director is speaking out.
“Over the last few days, we have struggled to make sense of the senseless act of violence,” Karen Reese said in an emailed statement to The Baltimore Sun. “Our hearts are broken over the lives lost and those staff who were injured and traumatized.”
A gunman demanding methadone fatally shot LabCorp phlebotomist David Caldwell on Monday at the Man Alive clinic before being killed in an exchange of gunfire with police, according to officials. Baltimore police Sgt. Bill Shiflett and another employee of the clinic, whose name has not been released, were injured in the incident. The 41-year-old clinic employee was released from the hospital Monday night and Shiflett is still recovering from surgery in the hospital after being shot by Ashanti Pinkney, 49.
It was the first time in the clinic’s 52 years, anything that violent occurred, Reese said.
Reese expressed condolences to Caldwell’s family and said his spirit will live on at the clinic in the hearts of patients and staff. She also praised Baltimore Police for their “sacrifice and courage” during the incident.
Shiflett, 51, is a seasoned officer who was about to clock out for the day when he chose to run into the building. Officers Christopher Miller and Jeremy Foster then pulled their supervisor to safety after he was shot.
The clinic was overwhelmed with the support from the community and with partners, Reese said. Man Alive has been closed since the fatal shooting and plans to reopen its doors next Monday. Patients have been directed to walk across the street from the clinic in the 2100 block of Maryland Ave. to the Institute of Behavior Resources/REACH building to receive their medication.
“We choose not to focus on the violence but rather on the support that we’ve experienced over the past few days,” Reese said. “The overwhelming response from our regulatory partners and colleagues has been an incredible source of assistance and comfort.”
Though employees are shaken up from the fatal shooting, Reese said it won’t stop them from continuing to serve the community and fulfill the clinic’s mission.