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Cops: Minneapolis gunman lost job over performance

Mon., Oct. 1, 2012, 1:29 p.m.

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The man who killed five people at a Minneapolis sign company was fired for poor performance and lateness just moments before he started shooting, police said Monday.

Investigators released a timeline of the rampage showing that Andrew Engeldinger worked his normal shift at Accent Signage Systems last Thursday, then at the end of the day was told to go to a meeting in the office of operations director John Souter.

Engeldinger went to his car first. During the meeting, he was fired and handed his last paycheck. Then he pulled out a gun.

Souter and Rami Cooks, company owner Reuven Rahimim’s right-hand man who also was at the meeting, struggled with Engeldinger for the gun. Both men were shot.

Engeldinger dropped a partially loaded magazine, but was able to reload and stepped out of the office and moved on to shoot Rahamim. He then walked down to the other end of the building, shooting other victims along the way, according to police.

Engeldinger eventually went down to the basement, where he fatally shot himself.

Rahamim and Cooks were among those who died, along with Accent Signage employees Ron Edberg and Jacob Beneke. UPS driver Keith Basinski also was fatally shot.

A separate police statement said managers had counseled Engeldinger about his performance before, and he’d been warned in writing the week before to improve immediately or be fired.

Souter remains hospitalized, along with another employee who also was wounded.

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