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Traveling healthcare worker from Baton Rouge recounts chaos in wake of Maine mass shooting

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BATON ROUGE - Traveling certified nursing assistant Torilla Stepter is with her family, celebrating her son's marriage this weekend. Stepter flew in from Lewiston, Maine, late Thursday night.

"Even right now I find myself shaking, jittering, jumping, because of that," Stepter said.

On Wednesday, Stepter was driving back into Lewiston from a neighboring town. 

"It was late at night, I've seen a lot of police cars. I've never seen anything like it. There were so many cop cars. I started crying, I was on the phone with my sister, and I'm like, 'Something happened in Maine, where I live, whatever happened is bad'," Stepter said.

Suddenly the heavy police presence made sense after an alert popped up on her phone.

"I was like, 'Oh my,' and she's like 'Wait, what?'. I couldn't say it at the time but she was like, 'Torilla, what's wrong what's going on?'. I was crying, I was hollering, 'There's an active shooter, he's on the loose!'," she recalled.

Stepter was staying in between the two locations suspected shooter, Robert Card, opened fire and killed more than a dozen people. She says she then drove 45 minutes out of town until she finally found a hotel with availability.

"When that alert came to my phone, it was like, shut everything down and go. You can't do anything, get shelter, go, I was about to get off and go into Lewiston, I saw more police cars, so I had to turn, drive 45 minutes away to get a hotel room," Stepter said.

Fortunately, she already had her flight booked to come home and be with her family.

"Just to know that person is still out, they don't know where is he at. He's got a car, he's got a gun. to be in the mix of that, it's something you would see in a movie, or have heard of before. I don't wish that on nobody," Stepter said.


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