Post office employees who heard or saw the shooting called 911. Many of them were hiding from the gunman, who police said is 24-year-old Deshaune Stewart. Stewart is in custody.
“I just happened to turn and look and one of our carriers came in and he looked, he looked naked,” said a 911 caller, who identifies himself as a post office employee. “He shot our supervisor in the shoulder and as soon as I seen that, we all scattered. I got out of there.”
Police say Stewart shot and killed 52-year-old supervisor Lance Herrera-Dempsey at the post office.
Then, investigators said Stewart waited for and attacked 53-year-old Ginger Ballard outside of her apartment complex, about three hours later.
“There is a man with a gun, chasing a woman. I tried to let her into the building. He dragged her out,” said a 911 caller.
Police said Stewart threw Ballard to the ground. She died from blunt force trauma.
In a tribute to Ballard, Karen Garber writes about the woman she loved:
“Ginger was a free spirit who loved adventure. She was a wonderful artist and had just begun to take a brush to paper again. I can tell you that she loved our dogs and couldn’t wait to get new kittens. I can tell you I’ve never seen a deeper love than the one she shared with her parents.”
Garber went on to say, “We looked forward to our life together when we retired in a few years with talk of marriage.” They last spoke on Friday night. Garber said she ended the conversation with, “I love you and talk to you tomorrow.”
Herrera-Dempsey was a member of the United Methodist Church For All People on Parsons Ave. in Columbus. The church said it’s planning a memorial service for him in January.