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Locals speak out to Action News about Navy Yard shooting

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Photo: Video by ktnv.com

Locals speak out to Action News about Navy Yard shooting

By Spencer Lubitz. CREATED Sep 16, 2013

Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- Some residents from Southern Nevada, who witnessed the Navy Yard shooting, spoke out to Action News.

The shootings happened not far from Capitol Hill and the heart of Washington, D.C.

A representative from local Congressman Steven Horsford's office passed by one of the victims on his way to work Monday morning, just moments after the shots were fired.

Don Andres said he started snapping photos on his way to work and said a crowd gathered around a man who was on the ground and appeared to be seriously hurt.

Andres, who works in Horsford's office, and his family in Henderson, said at the time he had no idea how widespread the violence was.

"I hadn't even turned on any news source. Hadn't even looked at anything on my phone. It's just kind of chaos. All I knew was 'active shooter.' Now that I'm watching the news, I obviously realize this is a much larger scale," he said.

Andres also said he rain into several police officers with their weapons drawn on his way to work. He said security checks at the Capitol building were tighter than usual.

In addition, Las Vegas resident Jim Jeffris is a career naval officer, with more than 30 years in the service.

The retired captain spoke to Action News about serving on bases across the world, as well as spending time at the Navy Yard in the nation's capitol, becoming familiar with the scene of Monday's deadly mass shooting.

"I had a hell of a time getting in with a military uniform and ID. How someone could get in that didn't belong there, I can't even imagine," said Jeffris.

He was struck by how brazen the attack was, with the shootings occurring in broad daylight, at a facility he describes as heavily guarded.

Jeffris now makes Las Vegas his home and said the Navy Yard is a peculiar location to attack, citing other targets that would be much more disruptive to military operations and readiness.

That's one reason he believes Monday's shooting was deliberate and took detailed planning.

Spencer Lubitz

Spencer Lubitz

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Spencer Lubitz is a general assignment reporter for Action News.