Cincinnati police chief Eliot Isaac said investigators don't know why Santa Perez chose to open fire in the building that headquarters Fifth Third Bancorp.
He had a pistol and more than 200 rounds of ammunition, Isaac said, adding that the gunman was not a former or current employee of the bank He had gone to several businesses before going to the bank, he said.
Cincinnati Police say two additional victims were sent to area hospitals, but they do not have information on their conditions.
"It started out apparently with an active shooter at the Fifth Third tower, there was an officer intervention and from there now it's just victims and things like that", a police officer told a local CNN affiliate. An unarmed security officer helps someone up and races with that person around a corner, moments before the gunman walks into view, firing shots.
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Isaac also praised officers, who arrived at the site of the shooting within seconds, for their "quick response".
Servatii Bakery manager Jaenetta Cook says she hurried to lock the door after the first two shots were fired Thursday morning. One has been upgraded to serious condigtion and the other is in fair condition, according to UC Health.
Richard Newcomer, a contractor who worked for Gilbane Building Company, was one of three killed.
"I know this Cathedral takes very seriously it's ministry to Cincinnati as a whole and is always ready to be a place where people can come for solace and prayer and to rededicate themselves to the service of Cincinnati and beyond", said Bishop Tom Breidenthal, Diocese of Southern Ohio. He died at the scene, Isaac said.
Santa Perez had been in Cincinnati since at least 2015, police said.
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No officers were injured in the incident, and the gunman's motive remains unclear. "I think there's something deeply sick at work here, and we as a country have got to deal with it".
The shooter is dead along with three of his victims. Investigators searched the home for evidence within hours of the shooting, finding nothing unsafe.
His aunt, Yudy Martinez Perez, slumped against a kitchen wall and muttered denials after she heard the news, The Cincinnati Enquirer reported. One victim was located at 5th and Walnut streets, police said.
A woman who was shot 12 times during a shooting at a Cincinnati bank this week has expressed her gratefulness to first responders for helping her survive the ordeal.
Yudy Martinez Perez broke down crying in the kitchen floor of her Forest Park home Thursday afternoon when she learned that her nephew was the shooter who took three lives at the Fifth Third Center.
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Some told local news outlets that he usually looked angry and wouldn't say hello while another said he always appeared to be in a good mood.