The authorities in Maine said an arrest warrant citing eight counts of murder had been issued for Robert R. Card, the 40-year-old man they were seeking in connection with the shootings Wednesday night at a bowling alley and bar in Lewiston.
Robert Card.Credit…Lewiston Maine Police Department, via Associated Press
But officials declined to say much about him at a news conference Thursday morning, other than that his location remained unknown and he should be considered armed and dangerous.
“We believe this is someone that should not be approached,” Col. William G. Ross of the Maine State Police said, urging the state’s residents to be careful.
The U.S. Army’s public affairs office at the Pentagon said Mr. Card is a sergeant first class in the Army Reserve who enlisted in December 2002. He was trained as a petroleum supply specialist, whose work involves shipping and storing vehicle and aircraft fuel.
Mr. Card has not served on any combat deployments and is assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 304th Infantry Regiment in Saco, Maine, according to an Army spokesman.
Police investigators were looking into an incident in which Mr. Card had a run-in with officials during a recent visit to Camp Smith, a National Guard training facility not far from West Point, a senior law enforcement official said. The official said that Mr. Card was later evaluated at a mental health facility.
Bryce Dubee, an Army spokesman, said late Thursday afternoon that Mr. Card’s reserve unitsupported training at West Point in the summer, but there are no records to indicate he had instructed or participated in any training. Mr. Dubee declined to provide further details, citing federal privacy rules and the active investigation.
Law enforcement agencies posted a photo on social media of the man they said they were seeking, wearing a brown hooded sweatshirt and carrying a military-style semiautomatic rifle.
Mr. Card was last known to be driving a white Subaru Outback with a black bumper, officials said. That vehicle was later found at a boat landing in the town of Lisbon, prompting a lockdown there. the police said.
Mr. Card was in his hometown, Bowdoin, to hunt deer as recently as last fall, a neighbor of his family said. Bowdoin is a small community about 16 miles from Lewiston. The neighbor, Rick Goddard, 44, said he had known the Card family most of his life, because Mr. Goddard’s parents live less than a mile down the road from the Card family house.
He described the Cards as quiet farmers who had been in the area for several generations. Robert has a brother who had also been in the military and a younger sister, Mr. Goddard said.
The area around Mr. Goddard’s rural home is usually placid, but since the shooting on Wednesday, the sound of helicopters has come from above, and tactical vehicles have zoomed by regularly.
At the address for the Card family home, no one answered the door on Thursday, and there was only one car parked out front. A broken basketball hoop hung from the garage, and a worn swing set stood in the front yard.
A farm owned by the Card family sits a short drive away, beside a property that used to be owned by Mr. Card’s grandfather, Mr. Goddard said, and he pointed to another property nearby that had once been home to Mr. Card’s great-grandfather. It now sits abandoned. The area has plenty of dense woods where one can hide.
“We’re on edge right now because we know this is his stomping area,” Mr. Goddard said.