Jacksonville Mass Shooter 'Clearly Targeted Other Gamers' and Bought Gun in August
Two people were killed and 10 were injured Sunday during a mass shooting in Jacksonville at a video game tournament
The man who fatally shot two people Sunday at a video game tournament in Jacksonville before killing himself “clearly targeted other gamers” and legally bought the gun he used in August, authorities said at a Monday press conference.
Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams said that in addition to the two fatal victims, 10 people were injured in the attack, revising the figure of 11 given yesterday.
Williams added that all of the injured victims of the shooting — which took place inside a Chicago Pizza restaurant at the Jacksonville Landing, a collection of shops and restaurants along the St. Johns River — are expected to recover.
Williams said authorities reviewed footage of the attack, which took place about 1:30 p.m., and saw the shooter walk past other patrons as he “focused his attention on the gamers,” who were there for a tournament for Madden NFL 19, a football video game.
There were about 150 people inside the restaurant at the time of the shooting, said Williams, but the suspect “clearly targeted other gamers.”
Williams said the suspect — identified as David Katz, 24, of Baltimore — and other gamers had “prior relationships,” though he did not specify if Katz had relationships with the victims and he said authorities still have not established a “concrete motive.”
The suspect carried two handguns and extra ammunition into the restaurant, but police believe he used only one gun, said Williams.
Authorities said he purchased the guns in August and that they were were bought legally.
The fatal victims of the attack were Elijah Clayton, 22, and Taylor Robertson, 28. Both played Madden competitively, according to their profiles on the website of EA Sports, the maker of the Madden franchise.
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Audio from the shooting was partially recorded on the tournament’s live video. On the live-stream, 12 gunshots can be heard along with screams and a voice saying, “Oh, f—, what’d he shoot me with?”
In the video, Clayton is playing in a game when what appears to be a red laser targeting dot appears on his red sweatshirt before gunfire erupts.
Williams, during Monday’s press conference, said one of the guns belonging to the shooter has an “after-market laser-site” attached to it.
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According to Williams, authorities have searched the suspect’s vehicle and hotel room in Jacksonville and have questioned his parents, who have been cooperative.
Clayton was from Woodland Hills, California, according to his EA Sports page. He went by the name “True,” according to the page, which states he was “consistently one of the best in competitive Madden.”
Robertson, of Giles, West Virginia, was a married father, according to his Twitter account.
According to his EA Sports page, Robertson won last season’s Madden Classic. The page added that he “has the skill to completely take over any Madden tournament.”
On Sunday night, Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry said at a press conference, “We have faced an occurrence that is all too common and will require us to do the hard work of public safety to make sure that people are safe.”
Curry added, “Tonight we pray for the wounded and we pray for the families for those who are lost.”