Connor Betts, the Dayton, Ohio mass shooter, was a self-described “leftist,” who wrote that he would happily vote for Democrat Elizabeth Warren, praised Satan, was upset about the 2016 presidential election results, and added, “I want socialism, and i’ll not wait for the idiots to finally come round to understanding.”
Betts’ Twitter profile read, “he/him / anime fan / metalhead / leftist / i’m going to hell and i’m not coming back.” One tweet on his page read, “Off to Midnight Mass. At least the songs are good. #athiestsonchristmas.” The page handle? I am the spookster. On one selfie, he included the hashtags, “#selfie4satan #HailSatan @SatanTweeting.”
Old tweets indicated the site was once @bettsconnor:
On the date of Republican Sen. John McCain’s death, he wrote, “F*ck John McCain.” He also liked tweets referencing the El Paso mass shooting in the hours before Dayton. The Twitter page contains multiple selfies of Betts.
Warren has now released a statement.
Twitter has now suspended the Twitter page, removing it. It was up for several hours after the mass shooting. Asked why it suspended Betts’ page and whether law enforcement requested that, a Twitter spokesperson told Heavy, “We’re proactively removing content that violates our policies and will be engaged with law enforcement, as appropriate.”
On Nov. 2, 2018, he wrote: “Vote blue for gods sake.” He also retweeted Bernie Sanders.
“This is America: Guns on every corner, guns in every house, no freedom but that to kill,” he wrote in December 2018. And, “’Tis! The pistol is a Beretta 93R, called the REK7 in BO4. Do love me some guns!” He also wrote, “Hammer, brick, gun.” On Feb. 14, 2018, he tweeted this at Sen. Rob Portman: “@robportman hey rob. How much did they pay you to look the other way? 17 kids are dead. If not now, when?” That was the date of the mass shooting at a school in Parkland, Florida. His dad also wrote about politics on Facebook. You can read more about that here.
That’s all according to his Twitter page, which was reviewed by Heavy. The Twitter page gives the first public glimpse into the shooter’s politics, and what he wrote stands pretty much in polar opposite to accused El Paso shooter Patrick Crusius, whose own social media accounts indicated support for President Donald Trump and anti-immigrant measures, such as the border wall. You can read about Crusius’s pages here. (The Greene County Board of Elections lists Betts’ party as “Dem.”)
Authorities now say that Betts, 24, of Bellbrook, Ohio, donned body armor and a mask before shooting and killing 9 people outside a Dayton bar, including his own sister. At least 27 people were injured. Police say the motive is unclear. You can read tributes to the victims here.
Heavy confirmed the Twitter page through multiple verification factors, including a matching tattoo on both a page selfie and prominent news outlets’ pictures of Connor Betts; several family linkages to the page; similar photos, including of him and the family dog, on the page and family members’ verified accounts, including its name; and references to college and growing up in Ohio and Dayton. The website Snopes has also confirmed the accuracy of the claims about Betts’ politics and tweets. The page also contains a tweet suggesting it was once called @bettsconnor:
NBC News reporter Ben Collins said on the air that Connor Betts had a social media presence and identified himself as part of the left, and that he “tweeted about Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders.”
Here’s a tweet mentioning Bernie Sanders:
“#2016ElectionIn3Words This is bad,” he wrote on Nov. 8, 2016 (he did follow Trump’s page). “You can’t kill 50+ people and injure 600(!) In 10 minutes with cigarettes my dude,” he wrote in 2017. In response to a Buzzfeed story that read, “Virginia has declared a state of emergency in anticipation of the ‘Unite the Right’ rally anniversary in Charlottesville this weekend,” he wrote: “Kill every fascist.”
His top post was a retweet of a person responding to a Huffington Post story. That person had written, “Millennials have a message for the Joe Biden generation: hurry up and die.”
He shared a post that showed Donald Trump and referred to a global fascist movement:
He also wrote that he enjoyed anime, railed against ICE and the industrial revolution, and made references to Satan. In May, he tweeted, “You’ll never be rid of me. I’ll haunt your life like a fucking vengeful spirit.” He added, “My Horoscope Just Reads ‘Doom.'” He shared posts of people outed for possibly being at a KKK rally in Dayton and wrote, “Know your enemies.”
Here’s what you need to know about Connor Betts’ social media:
On Twitter, Betts Wrote About Politics, Guns & Anime
On the Twitter page, Connor Betts indicated he’d vote for Elizabeth Warren for president but not Kamala Harris, responding to a person’s tweet suggesting they be co-presidents. “Nahh, but only cuz Harris is a cop – Warren I’d happily vote for,” he wrote.
He posted a photo of his tattoo (on right) on the Twitter page. The photo on left was a widely circulated photo of Betts in the news media.
He responded to a person’s tweet that read “if you nominate anyone other than sanders, you’re going to lose” by writing, “I think Warren has a decent shot, as well.”
Some of his tweets referred to guns.
He shared an article that criticized Democratic leaders like Nancy Pelosi for not supporting Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar, and Ayanna Pressley. “Read it,” he wrote.
Some of his tweets were more philosophical. He wrote, “The time people say it is vs the time it feels like? I’m taking feelings over facts any time.” He was interested in the Area 51 Facebook page, writing, “There’s a fb group about storming area 51.”
He railed against the police, QAnon conspiracy theories, and white supremacists. “I love how older people will be like life has no safe spaces! Grow up!!! like we didn’t see the planes hit the twin towers when we were f*cking 5, we knew that the world was scary as soon as those f*cking towers came down my man,” he wrote.
Some of his tweets dealt with drugs. He wrote, “Amphetamines: For When You Need To Get Shit Done!” On July 10, he wrote, “Black Parade was bigger, but Three Cheers was better.” Some of his tweets were anti-police. “The police will not protect you,” he wrote.
He shared posts about “concentration camps” at the border and wrote, “Cut the fences down. Slice ICE tires. Throw bolt cutters over the fences.”
He retweeted a post from another person about stealing from “right wingers” at a Trump rally.
One of his tweets referred to white people. “Imagine if we did the thing you liked, but in a way that totally ruins what you liked about it! Wouldn’t that be fun? Ha ha Also, of course they’re all white people, of course they are,” he wrote.
The Neckbeard Deathcamp band wrote on Twitter, “I did not know Conner Betts personally, but the midwest grind scene isn’t large and we spend a lot of time pushing pornogrind out of Chicago DIY. For what it’s worth men who cape hard line “””””left””””” politics who still treat women like sh*t are not exactly a new invention.” According to Vice, Betts followed their account on his now deleted Twitter page and was in other bands that are part of the “pornogrind scene.”
Vice wrote that Betts “identified as an anti-fascist and slandered Nazis and gun violence in social media posts that have since been removed from Twitter and Facebook.” The Facebook page is deleted.
Neckbeard Deathcamp added, “Thank you to the handful of publications who reached out to us to talk about it. I apologize if I had let on that I knew the shooter more intimately than I did, to me he was just another dipshit in the facebook groups posting tapes….It seems like kind of a reach that him following us on twitter from a fairly anonymous account meant I knew him well. But no good right wing theory comes without a few exciting artistic flourishes.” The tweets also mention “Incel Warfare.”