Aaron Alexis is responsible for the Navy Yard shooting that occurred on Sept. 16 in Washington, D.C. Once he was identified as the gunman in the tragic fatal shootings that rocked the nation's capital yesterday, details about his life became available. The Guardian has reported some of those details, many of which weren't all that surprising to read about.
Alexis, 34, was discharged from the Navy in 2011 after his neighbor claimed that he shot a gun into the floor and through her roof in the apartment building they lived in. He reconnected with the Navy when he was offered a job with a subcontractor of Hewlett-Packard. The job was a Navy IT project and the badge that he was given for the job gave him access to the Navy Yard -- and that's how he entered the building without question on Monday morning.
Aaron Alexis was arrested in 2010 but never charged in a firearm-involved case. In 2004, he was questioned in Seattle in connection to an "anger-fueled shooting." Authorities learned that Alexis suffered from PTSD after taking part in 9/11 rescue efforts.
"He was a navy aviation electrician's mate third class from 1 February 2008 until he was discharged on 31 January 2011. He is listed as having received the national defense service medal and the global war on terrorism service medal," The Guardian reported. Several people called him a "nice guy" and many cannot believe that he was the one responsible for yesterday's shootings.
Aaron Alexis' motive still isn't completely clear but given the above information, people can start putting pieces together. It sounds like Alexis suffered from PTSD and that he had a direct problem with the Navy after he was discharged. These issues could have contributed to his decision to harm innocent people.
The Navy Yard shooting left 12 people dead and several others wounded. Alexis died yesterday. It's unclear whether he took his own life or if he was shot and killed by police.
© Effie Orfanides 2013