HALIFAX -- People who live near the denture clinic where Gabriel Wortman worked say they were stunned to learn that he was the suspect in a killing spree that resulted in at least 16 deaths, and Wortman being shot by police.

Bill and Lillian McCormack awoke to a slew of police activity outside the Atlantic Denture Clinic in Dartmouth, N.S., early Sunday morning. 

“I couldn’t believe it,” says Bill McCormack. “God, what happened anyway? Just unbelievable.”

As the news spread and details unfolded, they say they couldn’t believe what they were hearing.

A Gabriel Wortman is listed as a denturist in Dartmouth, according to the Denturist Society of Nova Scotia website. A suspect photo issued by the RCMP matches video footage of a man being interviewed about dentures by CTV Atlantic in 2014.

“Very, very shocked to think that someone we’ve known for so long, a good neighbour, a helpful neighbour, very kind, would ever think of doing such a tragedy,” says Lillian McCormack.

The McCormacks describe Wortman as a good and friendly neighbour, as well as a talented mechanic and carpenter.

In 2014, Wortman was featured on CTV News for providing free dental work for a cancer survivor. Sources say he helped many others as well.

An apparent yearbook photo from Riverview High School in New Brunswick notes that Wortman aspired to be an RCMP officer.

He also had a fondness for cars and motorcycles, and he reportedly purchases two old police cruisers, which he parked in the yard behind the clinic.

“It’s two Mountie cars,” describes Bill McCormack. “I never asked him about it.”