View Full Version : Breaking news...NASA employee kills hostage and self. Received mediocre job review.

Tennis Fool
Apr 21st, 2007, 12:35 AM
Wow, you guys on slow on the ball today. Interesting that no one's posted this yet. Probably a copycat. After that "fatal attraction" story two months ago, NASA needs to seriously reevaluate its mental health procedures.

April 20, 2007
Gunman Kills Hostage at Johnson Space Center

Filed at 7:00 p.m. ET
HOUSTON (AP) -- A NASA (http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/organizations/n/national_aeronautics_and_space_administration/index.html?inline=nyt-org) contract worker took a handgun inside an office building Friday at the Johnson Space Center and fatally shot a hostage before killing himself, police said. A second hostage escaped with minor injuries. The gunman shot himself once in the head more than three hours after barricading himself on the second floor of Building 44, which houses a laboratory.
The slain hostage was probably killed ''in the early minutes of the whole ordeal,'' Houston Police Capt. Dwayne Ready said.
None of those involved were immediately identified.
The man was believed to be an employee of Jacobs Engineering, which has a technical support contract with NASA.
''We understand it is one of our employees,'' said John Prosser, the company's executive vice president.
Roads within the 1,600-acre campus were blocked off during the confrontation. A nearby middle school also kept its teachers and students inside as classes ended.
NASA employees and contract workers were kept informed of the situation by e-mail.
Christine Reichert, space station flight controller at the space center, said employees were initially told to stay in their buildings. That restriction was lifted a few hours later.
Michael Zolensky, who studies cosmic dust at the space center, said workers were gathered around a television watching news reports of the situation.
Doors to Mission Control were locked as standard procedure.
President Bush was informed about the gunman as he flew back to Washington from an event in Michigan, White House spokeswoman Dana Perino said.
Associated Press writers Rasha Madkour and Mike Graczyk in Houston; Jennifer Loven in Washington, D.C.; and Mike Schneider in Orlando, Fla., contributed to this report.

http://www.nytimes.com/adx/bin/clientside/3df2cb88Q2FQ5CKQ20J@Q3BQ23eQ3C@JAFKJ0@Q7DQ20AQ3AQ2 3@k

Tennis Fool
Apr 21st, 2007, 04:36 PM
Uh...bump :unsure:

Apr 21st, 2007, 05:46 PM
worker took a handgun inside an office buildingHonestly, I'm surprised this doesn't happen more often!

Apr 21st, 2007, 06:32 PM
What is the world coming to!??

Apr 21st, 2007, 06:49 PM
:speakles: Why? :cuckoo:

Apr 21st, 2007, 07:31 PM
I am not surprised.............

Apr 21st, 2007, 07:34 PM
I sure hope he made a video so he can get famous.

Tennis Fool
Apr 22nd, 2007, 05:42 AM
Honestly, I'm surprised this doesn't happen more often!

Yeah, but this is NASA. :o

Tennis Fool
Apr 22nd, 2007, 05:45 AM
:speakles: Why? :cuckoo:

Mediocre job review.

Mediocre job review blamed for NASA shooting

By Jeff FranksSat Apr 21, 6:27 PM ET

A mediocre job review led a space engineer to buy a gun, then kill a co-worker he blamed for the appraisal and himself at NASA's Johnson Space Center, police said on Saturday.

The engineer, Bill Phillips, 60, left rambling notes saying his victim, David Beverly, called him stupid. He exacted his revenge by gunning him down in their NASA offices on Friday.

"You're the one that's going to get me fired," police quoted Phillips as saying before he shot Beverly, 62, in the leg and chest.

As police closed in, they said Phillips shot himself in the head.

The incident, coming on the heels of Monday's shooting rampage at Virginia Tech university that left 32 people dead, again raised the issue of U.S. gun violence and prompted NASA to review its security measures.

"We will be looking at yesterday's events to see if we can improve the security for our employees out here," JSC director Michael Coats said in a press conference.

His boss, NASA Administrator Michael Griffin, said little could be done if someone is bent on revenge at any cost. "It is essentially impossible to stop such a person," he said.

Phillips, a contract employee at NASA for Pasadena, California-based Jacobs Engineering Group Inc., was provoked by a mid-March job review that criticized him for being late to meetings and other minor offenses, said Jacobs senior vice president Lon Miller.

But his overall score was "average" and Phillips was "considered a solid performer" until recently, Miller said.

Phillips, who worked at the space center since 1992, bought a .38 caliber Smith & Wesson revolver on March 18 at a local gun shop and brought it into work in a duffel bag, officials said.

He and Beverly, a quality control engineer with offices nearby in JSC Building 44, went to lunch with another employee, who said Phillips had acted strangely.

At about 1:40 p.m., Phillips walked into Beverly's office, which he shared with employee Fran Crenshaw, with a gun in hand. Police said Beverly attempted to calm Phillips down, but after a few minutes Phillips shot him, then left the room.

Phillips returned, shot Beverly again as he tried to block the door, and took Crenshaw hostage.

He barricaded the office, bound Crenshaw with duct tape, then watched news coverage of the event on television before killing himself, police said.
In his lunch bag, investigators found a copy of his e-mailed performance review. It had been printed out March 18, the day he bought the gun.

The 1,600-acre Johnson Space Center is home to Mission Control and the NASA astronaut corps.

Friday's shooting follows the February arrest in Florida of astronaut Lisa Nowak on charges she assaulted a woman she viewed as her romantic rival for another astronaut.

Nowak, based at JSC in Houston, was fired from NASA and is awaiting trial in September.

Both incidents raised questions about whether NASA, which is trying to finish the International Space Station by 2010, is putting too much stress on its employees.

Griffin cited a recent survey that identified NASA as one of the best places to work in the government.

"It's hard to accept that we truly have such a high-stress environment if that's the case," he said.

Phillips lived by himself near the space center and was considered a loner by his neighbors. Police said his co-workers viewed him as "odd" and that he had recently become odder.

Copyright © 2007 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Reuters content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Reuters. Reuters shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

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Apr 22nd, 2007, 06:09 AM
hmm, maybe I need to leave this story around for my supervisor since we have employee evaluations coming up? :tape:

I suspect there was more going on there then just a mediocre job performance evaluation. All I know is I've had a supervisor that rode me so much over small petty things that I wanted to hurt her and started fearing I would explode one day so I started looking for another job.

Tennis Fool
Apr 23rd, 2007, 03:43 AM
hmm, maybe I need to leave this story around for my supervisor since we have employee evaluations coming up? :tape:

I suspect there was more going on there then just a mediocre job performance evaluation. All I know is I've had a supervisor that rode me so much over small petty things that I wanted to hurt her and started fearing I would explode one day so I started looking for another job.

Yeah, but maybe he thought a bad review would end his career at Jacobs Engineering, thus terminating his NASA-paid $$$ income.

Apr 23rd, 2007, 04:00 AM
hmm, maybe I need to leave this story around for my supervisor since we have employee evaluations coming up? :tape:


Apr 23rd, 2007, 03:55 PM
Memo to NASA - it's about time you start updating
the mental health history reports on your employees and
sub-contractors. A bit of periodic counseling reviews may
be handy about now.

Time to start checking people who have security passes a lot more
closely within the bowels of NASA daily. Something I'm sure they
don't do much once known employees pass the entry point of NASA

Pressures to move up, improve, get raises, prestige in one unit
of NASA over another, great retirement, benefits, etc. - it must
be very competitve. Everyone there is a multi-degree person with
high IQ's and upward career mobility.

The guys employer base was in LA, huge international company.

Guess his plans for upward mobility went down the tubes with a bad
review. No one told him that's not a reason to kill someone or yourself.
Get another job. Move on.