A gunman acted alone when he shot and wounded a top US Republican politician and four other people on a baseball field in northern Virginia, the Federal Bureau of Investigation has said. "I about fell out of my chair", Watson said, adding that authorities began to search their files for records of contacts with the shooter.
Those injured in the shooting at the Eugene Simpson Stadium Park ballfields in Alexandria, Va., were Louisiana Rep. Scalise; U.S. Capitol Police officers David Bailey and Crystal Griner; Tyson Foods lobbyist Matt Mika; congressional aide Zach Barth; and Texas Rep.
Tim Slater, the special agent in charge of the Washington FBI office, also said during a news conference Wednesday that James T. Hodgkinson did not have any ties to terrorism. He declined to say whether the people on the list were Republicans or at the baseball practice.
Investigators did find a list of lawmaker names that had been put together by the gunman, but there was no evidence to suggest that it was some kind of "hit list" or part of a broader plan to target individual members of Congress.
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The former owner of a Belleville home inspection business left behind a long written record of vehement opposition to Republican politics, regularly raging against President Trump and singling out Scalise at least once in a 2015 post to his Facebook account. The hospital says his condition has improved to fair.
In March, Hodgkinson left IL and drove to Alexandria, Virginia, where he lived in his van in a YMCA parking lot. "In the shooter's vehicle, located at the scene of the shooting, we found another laptop computer, a cell phone, and a digital camera". Two Capitol Police officers assigned to protect Rep. Scalise engaged Hodgkinson in a gun duel, according to the #Alexandria Police Department. He was having marital problems, Slater said, and was running out of money around the time of the attack. Between April and June, Hodgkinson visited the storage unit 43 times, sometimes twice a day.
The gunman was identified as Hodgkinson, 66, who volunteered for Bernie Sanders's presidential campaign. "He was married for 30 years, and it appears that that marriage was not going so well", Slater said.
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