Dr. Katherine Lindley Dodson was killed in a standoff at her medical office

By Steve Helling
January 29, 2021 12:51 PM
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Credit: Dell Childrens

Friends and family are mourning the death of a Texas pediatrician who was shot and killed by another pediatrician in a murder-suicide at a doctor's office at the end of an hours-long hostage standoff.

Dr. Katherine Lindley Dodson's husband and family issued a statement about the beloved doctor.

"As a dedicated mom, wife, daughter, friend and pediatrician, she radiated light, love and joy in everything she did and with everyone she touched," the family wrote in a statement. "She developed immediate rapport with her patients and had the unique ability to make you feel like the only person in the room. She brightened our lives and lifted us up with her laughter, which was like magic."

According to KXAN, Dodson, 43, grew up in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. She attended medical school at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center in New Orleans. She was married with three children.

On Tuesday, Austin authorities received a 911 call reporting shots fired at Children's Medical Group, a pediatrician's office. The caller reported that a man had entered the office with a gun and was holding hostages inside, according to an Austin Police Department news release. Upon arrival at the scene, police learned there were several hostages being held inside the business by the man, later identified as Dr. Bharat Narumanchi, and that others had already successfully escaped. 

Eventually, other hostages were allowed to leave, except for Dodson. 

Investigators learned that Narumanchi, a pediatrician, had been to the office a week earlier and applied for a volunteer position. Narumanchi had also recently been diagnosed with terminal cancer. 

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Hostages reported to officers that Narumanchi was armed with a pistol, plus what appeared to be a shotgun, and had two duffel bags, the news release states. A negotiator arrived on the scene and attempted to deescalate the situation for hours. 

Police believe Narumanchi shot himself after fatally shooting Dodson. He and Dodson do not appear to have known each other other than Narumanchi's visit to the office a week earlier, according to police.

"We are all better because of her," her family concluded in their statement. "Our only comfort is knowing she is now with Jesus and all the heavenly saints who are undoubtedly already looking forward to her first costume party. We are so grateful for the outpouring of love and concern."

Narumanchi's parents issued a statement to Fox News expressing their "most sincere condolences and most fervent prayers to the family, friends and colleagues of Dr. Lindley Dodson."

"We share your grief for a life so senselessly cut short. We don't understand our son's motives or actions but feel this time is best spent remembering Dr. Dodson and her contributions to this world," their statement continued. "The consequences of this action will live with us forever and we can only hope that faith, spiritual healing and God's light will guide us through the darkness of this moment."