(Reuters) – The gunman who killed his sister and eight different individuals in Dayton, Ohio, earlier than he was slain by police had a historical past of violent obsessions and had beforehand mused about committing mass homicide, an FBI official stated on Tuesday.
FBI agent Todd Wickerham instructed a information convention two days after the bloodbath in Dayton’s historic downtown Oregon District that investigators have but to conclude what motivated the killer or whether or not he might have had an confederate.
Police stated within the preliminary aftermath of Sunday morning’s bloodshed that they believed the slain suspect, recognized as 24-year-old Connor Betts, a white man from Bellbrook, Ohio, had acted alone.
The suspect, who was carrying physique armor and a masks, opened hearth with an assault-style rifle fitted with a high-capacity ammunition drum that would maintain 100 rounds, police stated. Authorities stated officers on routine patrol within the space arrived on the scene and shot the gunman lifeless 30 seconds after the violence started.
Along with the 9 individuals, together with Betts’ sister, who had been killed, greater than two dozen others had been injured within the assault, which got here 13 hours after a capturing spree that claimed 22 lives in El Paso, Texas.
NO TIES FOUND TO TEXAS CARNAGE
The assailant in Texas surrendered to police and has been charged with capital homicide in what authorities are treating as a hate crime and an act of home terrorism.
Federal brokers have discovered no clues suggesting the Dayton gunman was influenced by the rampage in El Paso, stated Wickerham, the agent answerable for the FBI’s Cincinnati workplace.
Nonetheless, he stated, “the person had a historical past of obsession with violent ideations, together with mass shootings, and expressed a want to commit a mass capturing.”
“We now have uncovered proof all through the course of our investigation that the shooter was exploring violent ideologies,” Wickerham added.
However, a lot remained unclear. The agent stated investigators had been nonetheless searching for to find out what specific ideology might have influenced the gunman, “who, if anybody, helped him or had any advance data of his intentions to conduct this assault, and why he dedicated this particular act of violence.”
Wickerham additionally echoed earlier statements by the town’s police chief, Richard Biehl, that there was no indication thus far that the capturing spree was racially motivated, although six of the 9 lifeless had been African-American.
Authorities have beforehand stated Betts was identified to have been a troubled youth in highschool, at one level drawing up a “hit record” of scholars he wished to kill or in any other case hurt.
The investigation replace got here as Ohio Governor Mike DeWine, responding to mounting public stress for motion to curb gun violence, proposed a “purple flag” legislation that may enable a choose to order firearms confiscated from any particular person deemed to be a menace to themselves or others.
“We now have an obligation to one another,” DeWine, a Republican backed by the Nationwide Rifle Affiliation gun foyer, stated at a information briefing. “If somebody is exhibiting indicators of bother or issues, we should assist and we should not flip away.”
The governor was heckled on Sunday night time as he spoke at a vigil for the victims of the rampage. Protesters repeatedly chanted “Do one thing!,” a reference to perceived state and federal inaction to curb U.S. gun violence.
“Some chanted ‘Do one thing!’ they usually’re completely proper,” DeWine stated on Tuesday. “We should do one thing, and that’s precisely what we’re going to do.”
Reporting by Matthew Lavietes in New York and Steve Gorman in Los Angeles; Further reporting by Doina Chiacu and Eric Beech in Washington; modifying by Jonathan Oatis