Aaron Alexis, 34, of Fort Worth, Texas — a former Navy reservist and civilian military contractor — has been named as the deceased shooter in the Washington Navy Yard shooting massacre that rocked the nation’s capital on the morning of September 16.
There are 13 people confirmed dead — including Alexis — and despite varying reports of additional gunmen, it now appears Alexis acted alone.
While his motives are unclear, here is what we know about Aaron Alexis …
1. He Was Twice Arrested in Gun-Related Incidents — & Was Being Treated for Mental Illness
Aaron Alexis, the man identified by Washington D.C. police as a suspect in this morning’s tragic attack on a US Navy Yard, was previously arrested by Seattle police in 2004 for shooting out the tires of another man’s vehicle in what Alexis later described to detectives as an anger-fueled “blackout.”
From the police report:
But the most interesting tidbit of the report involves Alexis’ dad explaining why his son suffers from PTSD:
Read the entire report here:
Alexis was arrested in 2010 in Fort Worth, Texas, for discharging a firearm — shooting a hole in the ceiling of his home and through the neighbor’s apartment.
Here’s the associated mugshot, as seen on bustedmugshots:
The AP’s reporting on Alexis’ past arrest matches the bustedmugshots info but notes he was never charged:
Tarrant County court records show Alexis was arrested in Sept. 2010 for allegedly discharging a firearm within a municipality. The records do not indicate that Alexis was ever formally charged in the case.
NBC Dallas published the police report related to the incident. Here’s an excerpt:
She told that she was sitting in a chair when she heard the loud pop and saw the dust. She then saw that their was a hole in her floor just a couple of feet from where she was sitting while shredding papers and a hole in the ceiling. She told me that she believed someone had shot a bullet through her apt. She then told me that no one from downstairs had come up to talk to her and she had not gone down. She also told me that her downstairs neighbor ARR (Alexis,Aaron) has called the police several times on her for being loud however the police always said they didn’t hear anything and no action was taken. She said that several days ago Aaron confronted her in the parking lot about making too much noise. June told me that she is terrified of Aaron and feels that this was done intentionally.
Alexis told cops his gun did discharge — because he was “cleaning it when it went off.”
Here’s the police report document, via the Smoking Gun:
Following the incident, the AP reports, court records show he was targeted for eviction from the Orion at Oak Hill apartments — a gated community in Fort Worth, Texas.
A third arrest has emerged, this one apparently not involving a weapon, from 2008 disorderly conduct incident at a nightclub in DeKalb County, Georgia. Below is the associated document. As with his other arrests, he was never convicted of a crime, though he was held for two days in jail.
According to an official cited by multiple outlets, Alexis was recently treated for symptoms of mental illness including paranoia and hearing voices.
2. He Had Clearance to Enter the Base
Alexis had an access card to enter the Navy Yard because of his role working for a Hewlett-Packard subcontractor called The Experts. He started work at the Navy Yard last week and was residing at a local hotel.
It was previously reported that Alexis entered the base using a stolen ID card:
— Ryan Schulteis (@RyanSchulteis) September 16, 2013
Alexis was identified by his fingerprints. Before Alexis’ name emerged, another “suspect’s” name was erroneously aired by certain media outlets after an ID was discovered near the shooting that matched the suspect’s description.
Earlier, CBS News reported the ID of the shooter, based on an ID card found at the scene of the shootings, that person is not a suspect.
— CBS Radio News (@CBSRadioNews) September 16, 2013
3. He Was a Decorated Navy Reservist Who Had a Record of Misconduct
NBC Washington reports that Alexis was a four-year veteran in the Navy. He enlisted in New York in 2007, graduating boot camp at Great Lakes, Illinois. He qualified as an airman recruit and was a reserve for four years.
Alexis was discharged in 2011. Friends said he left the service because he didn’t like getting up early and believed he was underpaid.
Reports indicate he was disciplined eight times for misconduct while in the service, with citations for insubordination, disorderly conduct and attendance issues.
During his time in the military he rose to the rank of Aviation Electrician’s Mate, a third class petty officer. His base was the Naval Air Station Joint Reserve in Fort Worth, Texas.
He had been awarded the National Defensive Service Medal and the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal.
Here’s his full service record, via the U.S. Navy:
A removed LinkedIn profile describes him as a former Navy employee:
Interesting. Aaron Alexis from Fort Worth shows up in LinkedIn as a former Navy employee, but the profile was removed pic.twitter.com/K1WOSBJccb
— Pafford (@pafford) September 16, 2013
USA Today reports that Alexis was enrolled at Embry-Riddle University in Florida. He also was a network technician for Singlepoint Technologies.
Ben Jacobs of The Daily Beast reports that Alexis was an online student studying for a BS in Aeronautics.
Alexis, son of Sarah and Anthony Alexis, grew up in Brooklyn, according to the Washington Post, which spoke his his aunt, Helen Weeks:
“We haven’t seen him for years,” Weeks said of her nephew in a telephone interview. “I know he was in the military. He served abroad. I think he was doing some kind of computer work.” …
Alexis was born in Queens and was registered to vote in New York, reports NBC New York. He had a rifle shotgun permit for the city that was valid from 2000-03, the permit was never renewed.
The NYPD and FBI have interviewed his family members who live on Putnam Avenue in Brooklyn’s Bed-Stuy Neighborhood.
4. He Was a Meditating Buddhist Who Just Got Back From Thailand
A man, who identified himself as Aaron Alexis’ best friend, Nutpisit Suthamtewakul, told The Fort-Worth Star Telegram:
He lived with me three years, I don’t think he’d do this. He has a gun but I don’t think he’s that stupid. He didn’t seem aggressive to me.
Alexis worked for a time at Suthamtewakul’s restaurant as a waiter.
Sandy Guerrea-Cline, a customer at the restaurant, told The Telegram that Alexis, who was fluent Thai, had recently returned from a trip to Thailand. According to Cline, Alexis had worked as “a computer defense contractor … in information technology,” a job that previously took him to Japan.
Ironically, the man accused of mass murder was described as a follower of the peace-loving Buddhist faith who often attended a local temple in Texas, where he met Suthamtewakul.
— NBC DFW (@NBCDFW) September 16, 2013
Here’s Guerrea-Cline talking about Alexis, whom she describes as a “sweet, intelligent guy” who liked to party:
5. The FBI Needs Your Help to Find Out More About Alexis