TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV/Gray News) — The Tallahassee Police Department says a Dyke Industries employee was arrested after five people were stabbed at the manufacturer on the city’s northwest side.
Officers arrested Antwann Demetris Brown, 41, about 10 to 15 minutes after the first stabbing, Interim Police Chief Steve Outlaw said in a press conference. He was caught about a block away from the Dyke Industries building.
Brown is facing five counts of attempted first-degree murder and one count of aggravated assault, the State Attorney said.
Police say Brown got into an argument with another employee when he clocked in at 8 a.m. Brown was told to clock out, which he did at 8:20 a.m., then police were called at 8:33 a.m.
Outlaw says the department doesn't know what Brown did exactly during the time between clocking out and engaging the victims. Outlaw also says the argument with another employee didn't get physical.
Outlaw says it appears Brown sought out certain victims.
Police say there were no pending employment issues with Brown at Dyke Industries.
Police say he used a small, folding knife in the stabbing. His fellow employees armed themselves with what they could and held Brown at bay during the attack.
Outlaw says there is nothing to indicate that Brown was giving indications of his plans, motives or anything else ahead of time.
Outlaw also says Brown had been working at Dyke Industries for about three and a half months.
The officers who responded to the stabbing had been attending the city's 9/11 memorial service. Police don't believe the stabbing was related to 9/11.
“You can’t help but wonder, on the first flush when you hear that, is this related to the anniversary? You just can’t help but wonder that,” Outlaw said. “Very, very sad occasion... But fortunately, from what we can tell, there was no relationship to the anniversary.”
Investigators are continuing interviews with witnesses and victims, as well as looking at surveillance footage. Police will have a presence at the crime scene as they try to determine Brown's path and sequence of events.
"If you were on scene and didn't get a chance to talk with investigators, please give us a call," said TPD Spokesperson Damon Miller. "We'd like to thank the Tallahassee Fire Department, EMS, and also the Leon County Sheriff's Office for helping us out."
Police say they plan on searching Brown's house at The Dwellings at 5100 Blountstown Highway in Tallahassee. A spokesperson from The Dwellings confirmed that Brown has lived there since March.
According to the Florida Department of Corrections, Brown was convicted on drug and theft charges, with his first offense coming in 1996. Most recently, he was released from prison in July 2009.
Tallahassee Memorial Hospital says it received five patients from the incident.
A hospital spokesperson says one victim is in serious condition, two are in fair condition and two others are in good condition.
Dyke Industries has locations across the southeast, including Tallahassee and two others in Florida.
It provides residential and commercial building materials including interior and exterior doors, millwork, and windows. According to manta.com, Dyke Industries in Tallahassee employs about 20 to 49 people.