The man suspected of shooting to death two Virginia reporters and wounding a third person shot himself and has now died, state police say.
Ahead of a press conference scheduled for 2:00 PM EDT, state police say the man believed to have shot and killed two reporters and wounded a third person, shot himself and has now died of his injuries.
Vester Flanagan, known on-air as Bryce Williams, was a former employee of WDBJ, the same station where Alison Parker and Adam Ward worked. They were both shot today around 6:45 AM EDT during a live on-air segment.
The Washington Post reports "Brian Moran, Virginia secretary of public safety, said the shooter was pronounced dead at the hospital at 1:26 pm, according to state police."
Also injured this morning was 61-year old Vicki Gardner, head of the Smith Mountain Lake Regional Chamber of Commerce. She was in surgery earlier today.
Parker and Ward were respected and beloved members of the Roanoke community, a police spokesperson says. Those sentiments have been echoed online in social media, and by several colleagues at WDBJ.
Flanagan had sent a 23-page fax to ABC News, which police are now examining.
ABC reports that note as "an often rambling letter to the authorities, and family and friends, he writes of a long list of grievances. In one part of the document, Williams [Flanagan] calls it a 'Suicide Note for Friends and Family.'"
Caution- its contents are disturbing.
Via ABC News:
--He says has suffered racial discrimination, sexual harassment and bullying at work. --He says he has been attacked by black men and white females. --He talks about how he was attacked for being a gay, black man
"Yes, it will sound like I am angry...I am. And I have every right to be. But when I leave this Earth, the only emotion I want to feel is peace...."
"The church shooting was the tipping point...but my anger has been building steadily...I've been a human powder keg for a while...just waiting to go BOOM!!!!".
ABC adds that in it, Flanagan "writes what triggered today's carnage was his reaction to the racism of the Charleston church shooting:"
"Why did I do it? I put down a deposit for a gun on 6/19/15. The Church shooting in Charleston happened on 6/17/15..."
"What sent me over the top was the church shooting. And my hollow point bullets have the victims' initials on them."
It is unclear whose initials he is referring to. He continues, "As for Dylann Roof? You (deleted)! You want a race war (deleted)? BRING IT THEN YOU WHITE ...(deleted)!!!" He said Jehovah spoke to him, telling him to act.
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