Some in the audience at Wednesday’s Damageplan concert at Columbus, Ohio’s Alrosa Villa nightclub thought it was part of the show when a gunman stormed the stage during the first song and began firing. But it wasn’t, and by the time the shooting was over, five people were dead, including the band’s guitarist, former Pantera member ”Dimebag” Darrell Abbott, two fans, and the gunman himself, killed by a police officer who had happened upon the scene and heard the shots, MTV News reports. ”If the officer wasn’t as close as he was, I think this would have been a lot worse,” Columbus police spokesman Sgt. Brett Mull told the Associated Press.
Abbott and brother Vinnie Paul founded metal quartet Damageplan in 2003 after the breakup of Pantera, their chart-topping, Grammy-nominated ’90s thrash band. Damageplan had just begun its set before a crowd of 200 when the gunman, wearing a hooded jersey, climbed onstage and began shouting about Pantera’s demise. He fired five or six times at Abbott at close range, then opened fire on the crowd. Fans Nathan Bray and Erin Halk were also killed; police have yet to release the names of the fourth person killed or the gunman himself. Two others were wounded, including a bouncer who pulled the gunman away from Abbott. Sgt. Mull said others may have been wounded but had fled the scene.