The department said Thursday afternoon that the shooter, a 72-year-old white man, knew the other three people. He approached them in the apartment complex's parking lot brandishing a gun, and an argument ensued. The department did not offer any details about the argument. At some point the man opened fire and then shot himself, the DOJ said.
The victims were two white women, ages 53 and 64, and a 67-year-old Asian American man. The DOJ did not identify the shooter or the victims by name.
Mayor Rob Boelk said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press that the building houses about 30 people. The mayor said he didn't know what precipitated the shooting. The gunman was under armed guard at the hospital where he's being treated, he said.
Boelk described the complex as an assisted living facility, but DOJ officials later said it doesn't provide any medical care or monitoring services and is best described as a senior apartment complex.
A message left at a possible number for the apartment building wasn’t immediately returned Thursday. The building's Facebook page describes it as a home for the elderly.
Mayville is a city of 5,000 about 50 miles (80 kilometers) northwest of Milwaukee. There was one homicide in the city from 2015 to 2019, according to statistics compiled by DOJ.
“This is Mayville,” Boelk said. “We don't ever really have anything like that take place in town.”
Mayville Common Council member Dale Tollner said his ward includes the apartment building. He said no one has told him anything about the shootings. He described the area around the building as “small-town, not rough at all.”
Photos online show Spring Glen Apartments is a long, rectangular, two-story building surrounded by a parking lot on the edge of a wooded area. Across the street stands a McDonald's, a car wash, storage garages and a family-style restaurant.
“I walk past there every day and the one guy, he was on the stretcher, and it was horrible,” Tyler Sabel told WITI-TV.
His mother, Kristy Dorsey, described the scene after the shooting as “the worst nightmare I saw in my life.”
Gov. Tony Evers tweeted that the shooting was “heartbreaking news” and that his heart goes out to the victims and the community.
Follow Todd Richmond on Twitter at https://twitter.com/trichmond1