Police: Johns Hopkins gunman killed himself, mother

Paul Warren Pardus, 50, alias Warren Davis, reportedly distraught by doctor's news of her condition

Topics: Crime,

A man who became distraught as he was being briefed on his mother’s condition by a surgeon at Johns Hopkins Hospital pulled a gun and shot the doctor Thursday, then killed his mother and himself in her room at the world-famous medical center, police said.

The doctor, who was wounded in the abdomen, was expected to survive.

The gunman, 50-year-old Paul Warren Pardus, had been listening to the surgeon around midday when he “became emotionally distraught and reacted … and was overwhelmed by the news of his mother’s condition,” Police Commissioner Frederick H. Bealefeld III said.

Pardus pulled a semiautomatic gun from his waistband and shot the doctor once, the commissioner said. The doctor, identified by colleagues as orthopedic surgeon David B. Cohen, collapsed outside the eighth-floor room where Pardus’ mother, Jean Davis, was being treated.

Pardus then holed up in the room in a more than two-hour standoff that led authorities to lock down a small section of the Nelson Building while allowing the rest of the sprawling red-brick medical complex — a cluster of hospital, research and education buildings — to remain open.

When officers made their way to the room, they found Pardus and his mother shot to death, he on the floor, she in her bed.

Bealefeld said he did not know what the woman was being treated for at Hopkins, a world-class institution widely known for its cancer research and treatment. It is part of Johns Hopkins University, which has one of the foremost medical schools in the world.

You Might Also Like

Michelle Burrell, who works in a coffee shop in the hospital lobby, said she was told by employees who were on the floor where the doctor was shot that the gunman was angry with the doctor’s treatment of his mother.

“It’s crazy,” she said.

Pardus was from Arlington, Va., and had a handgun permit in that state, police said. The gunman was initially identified as Warren Davis, but police later said that was an alias.

The wounded doctor, an assistant professor at the medical school, underwent surgery.

“The doctor will be OK,” police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said. “He’s in the best place in the world — at Johns Hopkins Hospital.”

With more than 30,000 employees, the Johns Hopkins medical system is Baltimore’s biggest private employer. The hospital has more than 1,000 beds and more than 1,700 full-time doctors.

The Nelson Building is the main hospital tower. The eighth floor is home to orthopedic, spine, trauma and thoracic services.

Hopkins said it informed its employees about the gunman in an e-mail at 11:30 a.m., about a half-hour after the doctor was shot. They were told to remain in their offices or rooms with the doors locked and to stay away from the windows. At 1:30 p.m., another e-mail went out advising employees that police “are in control of the situation.”

As the standoff dragged on, people with appointments in other parts of the hospital were encouraged to keep them.

Hannah Murtaugh, 25, a first-year student at the nursing school, said her physiology class in an adjacent building was put on lockdown. She said a classmate received a text-message warning from the school about a gunman in the Nelson Building. Her professor interrupted the lecture to let students know.

“They just kept telling us to stay away from the windows,” she said. “I was scared — wondering if any of my friends or other students who had clinicals that day were on that floor, hoping the situation would be contained, trying to see what was going on while staying away from the windows.”

She said security personnel helped keep everyone calm and made sure doors were locked.

——

Associated Press writers Ben Nuckols and Kathleen Miller in Baltimore and Medical Writer Marilynn Marchione in Milwaukee contributed to this report.

More Related Stories

Featured Slide Shows

  • Share on Twitter
  • Share on Facebook
  • 1 of 11
  • Close
  • Fullscreen
  • Thumbnails
    Martyna Blaszczyk/National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 1

    Pond de l'Archeveche - hundreds thousands of padlocks locked to a bridge by random couples, as a symbol of their eternal love. After another iconic Pont des Arts bridge was cleared of the padlocks in 2010 (as a safety measure), people started to place their love symbols on this one. Today both of the bridges are full of love locks again.

    Anders Andersson/National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 2

    A bird's view of tulip fields near Voorhout in the Netherlands, photographed with a drone in April 2015.

    Aashit Desai/National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 3

    Angalamman Festival is celebrated every year in a small town called Kaveripattinam in Tamil Nadu. Devotees, numbering in tens of thousands, converge in this town the day after Maha Shivratri to worship the deity Angalamman, meaning 'The Guardian God'. During the festival some of the worshippers paint their faces that personifies Goddess Kali. Other indulge in the ritual of piercing iron rods throughout their cheeks.

    Allan Gichigi/National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 4

    Kit Mikai is a natural rock formation about 40m high found in Western Kenya. She goes up the rocks regularly to meditate. Kit Mikai, Kenya

    Chris Ludlow/National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 5

    On a weekend trip to buffalo from Toronto we made a pit stop at Niagara Falls on the Canadian side. I took this shot with my nexus 5 smartphone. I was randomly shooting the falls themselves from different viewpoints when I happened to get a pretty lucky and interesting shot of this lone seagull on patrol over the falls. I didn't even realize I had captured it in the shot until I went back through the photos a few days later

    Jassen T./National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 6

    Incredibly beautiful and extremely remote. Koehn Lake, Mojave Desert, California. Aerial Image.

    Howard Singleton/National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 7

    Lucky timing! The oxpecker was originally sitting on hippo's head. I could see the hippo was going into a huge yawn (threat display?) and the oxpecker had to vacate it's perch. When I snapped the pic, the oxpecker appeared on the verge of being inhaled and was perfectly positioned between the massive gaping jaws of the hippo. The oxpecker also appears to be screeching in terror and back-pedaling to avoid being a snack!

    Abrar Mohsin/National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 8

    The Yetis of Nepal - The Aghoris as they are called are marked by colorful body paint and clothes

    Madeline Crowley/National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 9

    Taken from a zodiac raft on a painfully cold, rainy day

    Ian Bird/National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest Entries

    Slide 10

    This wave is situated right near the CBD of Sydney. Some describe it as the most dangerous wave in Australia, due to it breaking on barnacle covered rocks only a few feet deep and only ten metres from the cliff face. If you fall off you could find yourself in a life and death situation. This photo was taken 300 feet directly above the wave from a helicopter, just as the surfer is pulling into the lip of the barrel.

  • Recent Slide Shows

Comments

0 Comments

Comment Preview

Your name will appear as username ( settings | log out )

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href=""> <b> <em> <strong> <i> <blockquote>