FBI says gunman acted alone in shooting that wounded House majority whip; terrorism not involved
WASHINGTON - The Federal Bureau of Investigation says a gunman who shot and wounded a Republican lawmaker and several others on a northern Virginia baseball field acted alone.
At a news conference on Wednesday, Tim Slater, the special agent in charge of the Washington FBI office, said that the shooter, 66-year-old James T. Hodgkinson, had no ties to terrorism.
The shooting happened last Wednesday at the Eugene Simpson Stadium Park in Alexandria
House majority whip Steve Scalise was seriously wounded in the shooting and is still recovering after undergoing several surgeries. He remains hospitalized at this time.
Scalise and other congressional Republicans were practicing for their annual charity baseball game against Democrats last Wednesday at the Eugene Simpson Stadium Park in Alexandria when Hodgkinson arrived and started shooting.
U.S. Capitol Police and other officers returned fire and killed Hodgkinson, who was later identified as an unemployed home inspector who held a hostile attitude toward President Donald Trump and other Republicans.
It was also learned that Hodgkinson volunteered for Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign.
A report released by the FBI said that police had been called to Hodgkinson’s Belleville, Illinois home prior to the shooting at the baseball field after neighbors complained that he was taking target practice on his property. His prior criminal record includes a charge of domestic battery in 2006.
The report says that on the morning of the shooting, he was living in his vehicle which was parked in the parking lot of the YMCA on East Monroe Avenue. Investigators say he armed himself with two weapons, a 7.62mm caliber SKS rifle and a 9mm handgun, both of which were determined to have been purchased legally.
The report also says that on his body, investigators found a piece of paper that contained the names of six members of Congress. No context was included on this paper, however, a review of his web searches prior to the shooting revealed only a cursory search of two of those members of Congress.
Police say a second document with a rough sketch of several streets in the District was also found on him but was not deemed to be of investigative significance.
The reports goes on to say that Hodgkinson regularly visited a storage facility where he kept a laptop computer, more than 200 rounds of ammunition, a receipt for a November 2016 gun purchase and additional SKS rifle components.
The FBI found that his phone contained photographs at various sites on the National Mall and that he checked his email and text message while in Alexandria. He was also known to frequent the local libraries in Alexandria.