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Woman describes close call with Kansas shooter

HESSTON, Kan. -- Edna Decker was one of 38-year-old Cedric Ford's first targets.

"My car stopped, he was already out of the car and had this big machine gun."


Edna Decker

CBS News

He tried to carjack her, but shot and missed. Decker said she ducked just in time. "I could have been his first victim that died because it was directed right at my head."

Just up the road, Ford shot and carjacked another person, then drove that car to his job, Excel Industries in Hesston, Kansas.

Inside the building, armed with an assault rifle and a pistol, he shot 14 coworkers. Three were killed before police gunned him down.

Undated mug shot of Cedric Ford provided by the Harvey County Sheriff.
Harvey County Sheriff

Just 90 minutes before the shooting, Ford had been served with a protective order taken out by his former girlfriend. She wrote "he is an alcoholic, violent, depressed," and "it's my belief he is in desperate need of medical and psychological help."

Authorities believe the protective order triggered Ford's actions.

Video from his Facebook account appears to show him firing a gun. Ford has a criminal record. State and federal investigators are looking into whether he legally obtained the weapons.

"This man was not going to stop shooting. The only reason he stopped shooting was because that officer stopped the shooter," the county sheriff said.

And it wasn't just an officer, it was the town's police chief, Doug Schroeder.

"Rather than even waiting on back up, he went right in and did heroic duty and service," Kansas Governor Sam Brownback said of Schroeder.

When the police chief stopped the attack, there were till two to three hundred people inside the building.