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Navy Yard Killer Aaron Alexis: Who Is He?

Posted by on Sep. 17, 2013 at 1:36 PM
  • 6 Replies

Navy Yard Killer Aaron Alexis: Who Is He?

by Kiri Blakeley

The horrifying mass shooting in Washington, D.C. yesterday was the work of 34-year-old Navy reservist Aaron Alexis. Law enforcement has identified the man, who died in a shootout with police, as the deranged gunman who killed 13 people and injured 14 when he stormed the Navy Yard and opened fire. Alexis was reportedly carrying at least three guns, including an AK-15 assault rifle, which he bought legally, despite having a checkered past that included more than one run-in with the law. A picture is now emerging of the man who is presently the sole suspect in one of the largest mass shootings in the U.S. In some ways, he is the cliche of what we've come to know about men who perpetrate these kinds of crimes. In others, he is vastly different.

The background of Alexis is slowly being pieced together by the media and the people who knew him. Some of these are no doubt true, others will probably be disproved in the future. But here are some key points to Alexis' character and history:

- Alexis had recently been hired as a technician for a subcontractor working on the Navy's computer network. While reports say he would have soon been issued his own ID and had access to the Navy Yard, he used the ID of a retired Navy officer to gain access to the building.

- He was carrying three guns, an assault weapon, a semi-automatic pistol, and a shotgun. It's unclear how he was able to carry three guns, so law enforcement suspect he may have taken one or more from security personnel after he shot them.

- He was reportedly a heavy drinker who liked to play violent video games.

- He was reportedly a practicing Buddhist, who meditated and attended Buddhist services. Said a fellow congregant: "He was a very devoted Buddhist. There was no tell-tale sign of this behavior."

- He was reportedly being treated for mental illness since August by the Veterans Administration and had begun "hearing voices."

- He once worked for a company that was subcontracted to Hewlett-Packard. Some reports say he was fired from this company.

- The Navy discharged him in 2011 for "misconduct." He had been there since 2007 and complained to friends that he was a victim of "racial discrimination." Before his dismissal, he was awarded the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal and the National Defense Service Medal.

- He was arrested in Seattle in 2004 for shooting out the tires of someone's car. He reportedly said he thought the person was "mocking him" and described the incident as a rage-filled "blackout". He was also arrested 2008 for disorderly conduct and 2010 for firing through a neighbor's floor, but charges were never filed.

- He was reportedly not close to his family. His brother-in-law, Anthony Little, who is married to his sister Naomi, said he'd never even met him. His mother lives in Brooklyn. Police are currently guarding her home. Little said: "The family are distraught ... they're shocked."

- Until May, Alexis worked at a Thai restaurant, Happy Bowl Thai, in Fort Worth, Texas, before he left to start the government contracting job. Customers described him as polite and always "smiling and friendly."

- At various times, he claimed he was traumatized by the terrorist attacks of September 11 and even told some people he had helped with the recovery effort.

The picture that emerges is one of a man with many contrasts -- a Buddhist who loved to meditate, but yet who played violent video games and carried guns. A smiling and happy man, yet one prone to occasional fits of rage so violent that he would shoot out a stranger's tires. Someone who couldn't seem to keep a job, had mental illness problems, and had a police record, yet somehow gained "secret clearance" to a government building. Someone who may have had mental illness and schizophrenia, but who was skilled enough to get a job as a computer technician for the government.

A motive has still not been established. And there's no guarantee one will be.

Is he the type of person you expected?

What do you think his motive was?

by on Sep. 17, 2013 at 1:36 PM
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Replies (1-6):
jas_momof2
by アニメの雌犬 on Sep. 17, 2013 at 1:44 PM
3 moms liked this

Expected?  Yeah, I expect insane people to shoot and kill innocent people.  This asshole is insane.  We don't need gun control, we need people to step up and realize that when there are red flags, they hold a certain responsibility to the safety of the population.

This asshole has red flags all over the place. 

chrlstoncharmed
by Melissa on Sep. 17, 2013 at 1:49 PM

Wait. Back up the train. CNN is reporting that he did NOT use an AR-15 (this article says "AK-15") in the attack.

http://www.cnn.com/2013/09/17/us/ar-15-gun-debate/?hpt=hp_t1

(CNN) -- It has been called the most popular rifle in America, and it briefly returned to the spotlight after Monday's shooting at the Navy Yard: the AR-15.

A U.S. law enforcement official said Monday that gunman Aaron Alexis unleashed a barrage of bullets using an AR-15, a rifle and a semi-automatic handgun. Authorities believed the AR-15 was used for most of the shooting, the official said. The news prompted Sen. Dianne Feinstein, one of the strongest proponents of a ban on assault weapons like the AR-15, to issue a statement the same day asking, "When will enough be enough?"

However, federal law enforcement sources told CNN Tuesday that authorities have recovered three weapons from the scene of the mass shooting, including one -- a shotgun -- that investigators believe Alexis brought in to the compound. The other two weapons, which sources say were handguns, may have been taken from guards at the Navy complex.

The sources, who have detailed knowledge of the investigation, cautioned that initial information that an AR-15 was used in the shootings may have been incorrect. It is believed that Alexis had rented an AR-15, but returned it before Monday morning's shootings. Authorities are still investigating precisely how many weapons Alexis had access to and when.


jas_momof2
by アニメの雌犬 on Sep. 17, 2013 at 1:54 PM
1 mom liked this

Journalism at its finest.

Quoting chrlstoncharmed:

Wait. Back up the train. CNN is reporting that he did NOT use an AR-15 (this article says "AK-15") in the attack.

http://www.cnn.com/2013/09/17/us/ar-15-gun-debate/?hpt=hp_t1

(CNN) -- It has been called the most popular rifle in America, and it briefly returned to the spotlight after Monday's shooting at the Navy Yard: the AR-15.

A U.S. law enforcement official said Monday that gunman Aaron Alexis unleashed a barrage of bullets using an AR-15, a rifle and a semi-automatic handgun. Authorities believed the AR-15 was used for most of the shooting, the official said. The news prompted Sen. Dianne Feinstein, one of the strongest proponents of a ban on assault weapons like the AR-15, to issue a statement the same day asking, "When will enough be enough?"

However, federal law enforcement sources told CNN Tuesday that authorities have recovered three weapons from the scene of the mass shooting, including one -- a shotgun -- that investigators believe Alexis brought in to the compound. The other two weapons, which sources say were handguns, may have been taken from guards at the Navy complex.

The sources, who have detailed knowledge of the investigation, cautioned that initial information that an AR-15 was used in the shootings may have been incorrect. It is believed that Alexis had rented an AR-15, but returned it before Monday morning's shootings. Authorities are still investigating precisely how many weapons Alexis had access to and when.




darbyakeep45
by Darby on Sep. 17, 2013 at 5:08 PM

Wow...just wow...

DvlDogWfe
by Stella on Sep. 17, 2013 at 6:28 PM
1 mom liked this

Mentally ill people can act like nothing is wrong and fool people all the time. My SIL is metally ill and I have witnessed many behaviors. I'm not surprised that he was able to get a job and clearance to work. I also agree that instead of more gun control or laws, how about helping the mentally ill and their families by giving them more options as far as help either it be financial or emotionally, or physically. I understand that you cannot help those that refuse to help themselves, but maybe if families would step up more and reach out to a member that has an illness, it would help.  

SlapItHigh
by Gold Member on Sep. 17, 2013 at 10:47 PM

I didn't know what kind of person it Would be. I wondered if it was a disgruntled employee. 

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