Oneida Casino Complex Shooter Was Ex-Restaurant Manager, Reports Reveal

Posted on: May 3, 2021, 07:28h. 

Last updated on: July 5, 2021, 08:33h.

The shooter who killed two people in a restaurant at Wisconsin’s Oneida Casino complex Saturday night was an ex-employee of the eatery, local police said. He was shot dead by officers at the scene.

The Oneida Nation prohibits firearms on its properties
Police officers huddle at the Oneida Casino complex in Wisconsin as they investigate a shooting. A former restaurant manager there fatally shot two people and wounded a third over the weekend. He was later shot dead by police. (Image: WDJT)

On Monday, Brown County Sheriff Todd Delain identified the shooter as Bruce K. Pofahl, 62. Earlier this year, the shooter was dismissed from his job as the restaurant’s food and beverage manager, the Green Bay Press Gazette, a local newspaper said.

He had been prohibited from entering the building, WLUK, a local TV station, reported, citing police sources.

Initial reports said the shooter had gotten into a dispute with the person he had intended to shoot. But the intended victim was not present at the restaurant Saturday evening, so the shooter fired his gun at other workers in or near the restaurant, police said.

The restaurant is known as the Duck Creek Kitchen + Bar. It is located in the Radisson Hotel & Conference Center, which is located adjacent to the tribal casino. The property is near Green Bay.

The complex’s West Mason, Packerland, and Travel Center casinos were closed after the shooting. They reopened Sunday. The main casino and Irene Moore Activity Center bingo hall continue to be shuttered. Reopening details will be announced at a later time.

Police Release Details

On Saturday evening, the assailant made his way to a waiter station. He then shot two workers, police said. He was at close range.

He then wounded a third person outside of the restaurant, according to the Press Gazette.

Three Green Bay Police Department officers were believed to have shot at the shooter during a confrontation on a first-floor parking ramp on the east side of the casino complex, the Press Gazette said.

The shooter used a 9 mm handgun. The entire incident lasted about 10 minutes, the Press Gazette said.

The deceased victims were identified as Jacob T. Bartel, 35, and Ian J. Simpson, 32. Also, Daniel L. Mulligan, 28, was hospitalized for his serious wounds. He was listed in serious condition on Monday at a Milwaukee hospital.

The Green Bay officers were placed on administrative leave. It is standard procedure to take such an action while an officer-involved shooting is reviewed.

While the shooting took place, members of the public were having private events at the casino complex. They include a bachelor party, hockey team dinner, and wedding, WLUK said.

Counselors Made Available to Workers

The Oneida Nation operates the gaming property. Tribal and casino officials commented on the violent incident.

It is with great distress that I post this message to our Gaming employees and their families,” Louise Cornelius, Oneida Casino general manager, wrote on the casino’s Facebook page. “Our hearts are breaking over the terrible incident that occurred this evening at the Radisson Hotel and Conference Center.”

Between 150 and 200 employees were on the gaming property complex when the shooting took place, Cornelius said. Counselors will be available for employees.

“Please know that support will be provided to all Gaming employees who are affected by this situation,” Cornelius added. “Safety and security of our staff and guests has always been our top priority. That commitment was evident with our staff last night.”

“As it happens in the Oneida Nation community, we treat our community like family. As this happens on our reservation, we treat the situation like family, like it happened to us. We send those heartfelt condolences to those affected, as well as those who had to be on-site,” tribal Vice Chairman Brandon Stevens was quoted by the Press Gazette.

The Oneida Nation prohibits firearms on its properties. The tribe will review security protocols, the Press Gazette said.

“Some things such as this are pretty hard to stop. But it’s making sure we have the proper response to any type of emergency situation,” Oneida Nation Chairman Tehassi Hill said on Sunday, the Press Gazette reported.

Also, Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers, D, tweeted,  he was “devastated” about the “tragedy.”