Jacksonville shooting: Audio of 911 call by gunman’s dad released
Authorities have made public an audio recording of a 911 call made by the father of the individual responsible for a racially motivated assault in Florida, resulting in the deaths of three individuals.
In the call, the father informs the emergency dispatcher that his 21-year-old son, who carried out the attack, had ceased taking prescribed psychiatric medication.
Law enforcement reports indicate that the assailant employed a legally acquired rifle and handgun during the incident that occurred on a Saturday in Jacksonville. The victims have been identified as Anolt Laguerre Jr., 19; Jerrald De’Shaun Gallion, 29; and Angela Carr, 52.
On the Saturday in question, at 13:53 EDT (17:53 GMT), the father contacted 911 to express his apprehension about his son’s actions. He revealed that his son had left their residence two hours earlier, as conveyed in the audio transcript.
According to officials, the son had messaged his father at 13:18, urging him to inspect his bedroom. The room contained a will, racially biased writings, and a note indicating suicidal intentions.
This communication was dispatched moments after the Caucasian assailant, armed with an AR-15 rifle bearing a swastika emblem, initiated gunfire at a Dollar General store. Subsequently, the assailant turned the firearm on himself, shortly before the call to his father was made.
The assailant, identified as Ryan Christopher Palmeter, first shot Angela Carr, an Uber driver, in the store’s parking lot. He then entered the establishment a little after 13:00, firing at both Anolt Laguerre Jr., an employee of the store, and Jerrald De’Shaun Gallion, a customer. These details are the result of an investigative inquiry.
The father told officials his son had tried to kill himself when he was 15 and that it appeared he had stopped taking his psychiatric medication because he had a full bottle of his prescription in his room.
The dad told officials his son, who had no criminal history, had dropped out of Flagler College and moved home two years ago.
He said his son used to work at Home Depot, but lost the job and “pretty much has been living in his room”.
“He doesn’t go anywhere,” the father says.
Police tell him officers are on the way to the family home in the town of Orange Park.
Officials have said the gunman was detained for 72 hours in 2017 under the Baker Act, mental health legislation that allows for an individual’s involuntary detainment.
Authorities have said the shooter left behind a journal detailing his hatred of black people.
Before the shooting, he drove to the car park of the historically black Edwards Waters University, where students noticed him putting on a tactical vest, gloves, and a mask.
A campus security officer approached the suspect and he fled, opening fire at the store about 10 minutes later.
The US Department of Justice is investigating the attack as a hate crime and an act of racially motivated violent extremism.