Authorities had been alerted to the mental state of the Maine gunman prior to when he shot and killed 18 people Oct. 25, according to new reports. Robert Card was found dead two days after the shooting spree from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot.
The 40-year-old had been part of the Army Reserve, and The New York Times reported that Card had “punched a friend and said he was going to carry out a shooting spree,” just six weeks prior to the shooting.
Card’s family had also contacted police with concerns about his access to guns and deteriorating mental state more than five months before the shooting, according to The Washington Post. The local sheriff’s office even received a letter stating that a soldier had previously served with Card was worried he might “snap and commit a mass shooting.”
On Wednesday of last week, Card entered a bowling alley and a restaurant in Lewiston, Maine, where he shot and killed 18 people. He escaped getting caught and was on the loose until Friday, leading a regionwide manhunt for the dangerous gunman.
A statewide awareness alert was issued in mid-September to be on the lookout for Card, who had made threats against his base and fellow soldiers. Police made a visit to his home, and moved on from the alert shortly after, The Associated Press reported.
After he was found dead, authorities found “a multitude of weapons while searching for Card and believe he had legally purchased his guns,” per AP.
The shooting was Maine’s deadliest mass shooting in the state’s history, and more than 1,000 people attended a vigil to honor the victims of the killing, per AP.