The Las Vegas shooters were conspiracy nuts

conspiracy

Shooters identified in slaying of Metro Police officers, bystander:

Much like the Isla Vista shootings I hadn’t planned on blogging about the recent shootings in Las Vegas that claimed the lives of police officers Alyn Beck and Igor Soldo, and innocent bystander Joseph Robert Wilcox. I figured that better bloggers than me would do a better job.

Then I got the Las Vegas Sun article that I’ve linked to above in my inbox. It said that the shooters had planned on doing the next Columbine. That sort of puts it in my wheelhouse but only peripherally. Then I got a Twitter message from former crime blogger Steve Huff. One of his Twitter followers had sent him the link to the Facebook of Jerad Miller, one of the gunman in the attack. His wife, Amanda Miller, was the other. If you’re expecting me to post a link to his Facebook I don’t do that anymore. I don’t want any of his Facebook friends who probably had nothing to do with their horrible crimes harassed.

Anyway, most of his public Facebook posts were about guns and the legalization of weed which pretty much puts him in the Libertarian camp but I don’t think his politics are what caused him and his wife to shout “This is a revolution” and “We are freedom fighters” before killing three in cold blood. Jerad Miller, and by association probably his wife, was a conspiracy nut. Here are some highlights from his Facebook.

jeradmillerfb2

He believed in chemtrails.

He believed in chemtrails.

And the New World Order.

And the New World Order.

He was a truther.

He was a truther.

And a birther.

And a birther.

In my opinion anyone who believes in these outlandish conspiracy theories are ignorant delusional paranoids who feel the need to blame some imaginary bogeyman for the failures in their own lives. By most accounts it seems that the Millers had plenty in theirs.

The Millers are not heroes or revolutionaries. They are what all murderers are, cowards. They cowardly shot and killed two police officers who were just eating their lunch then shot and killed a man who just happened to be at the wrong place at the wrong time before the pair cowardly took their own lives before they could be captured. I’m sure the conspiracy nuts will hail them as martyrs but they’re not. Just cowards.

My thoughts and prayers go out to the friends and families of the victims.

Questionable coalition blames shooting sprees on psych drugs

rx

Psychiatric drugs blamed for shootings:

For those of you Luddites and ‘Big Pharma’ conspiracy theorists who believe that anti-depressants and other psychiatric drugs cause school shootings and other shooting sprees this should hopefully show you just how idiotic your argument sounds.

An unlikely coalition of gun rights advocates, Scientologists and physician-skeptics is using post-Newtown outrage over gun violence to promote the view that psychiatric drugs fuel mass shooters.

That’s right. You’re standing behind gun nuts, Scientologists and a various assortment of quacks. Speaking of a quack…

“IT IS NOT GUNS” that are to blame for mass shootings, Ignatius Piazza, a chiropractor who runs Front Sight Firearms Training Institute, said in a blog entry. Rather, “the common denominator (is) the creation of strong, mind altering, psychiatric drugs.”

Yeah, because a chiropractor, aka not a real doctor, would know all there is to know about psychiatry. You’ll forgive me if I don’t believe a branch of ‘medicine’ where the participants get their diplomas at a strip mall.

I will agree with one thing that the quack said. Guns don’t cause people to kill much like hammers don’t cause houses to get built. As always it’s the people behind them. The only thing that causes these mass shootings are evil bastards bent on violence. Neither the guns nor the drugs caused them.

The article goes on to mention that a relative of Adam Lanza was on the antipsychotic Fanapt and that James Holmes was on Zoloft and clonazepam, aka Clonopin. Hell, I’ll even throw one in that they didn’t mention. Eric Harris was on the drug Luvox. But I can equally argue the reverse. Cho Seung Hui was not on any medication. Investigators said that Prozac had little to no impact on the shootings at NIU done by Stephen Kazmierczak. Lastly Eric Harris’ lackey, Dylan Klebold was not on any medications either.

If it sounds like I’m taking this personally it’s because I am. I’m tried of bullshit artist using anti-depressants as a bogeyman in order to fuel whatever misguided agenda they have which in turn attaches a stigma to people who do take anti-depressants.

A number of years ago I started taking an anti-depressant. Prior to that I was suicidal and self-destructive and it affected all of those around me. Since I started taking them I have become a completely changed man and my only regret is that I didn’t start taking them sooner.

Ant-depressants can help people and no should be ashamed if they take them. They do not cause people to go on killing sprees. Those are facts. Try dealing with them once in a while.

Family of Freund’s victims file lawsuit

Relatives sue over shotgun slayings in Aliso Viejo:

Relatives of the victims of gunman William Freund are filing lawsuits against several different parties…

Relatives of a father and daughter who were killed when a neighbor burst into their Aliso Viejo home and opened fire have filed a lawsuit against the killer’s family, the gun dealer who sold the weapon and a support-group website where the gunman had vowed to wage a “terror campaign.”

Denise Smith and her son, Brandon Smith, filed the lawsuit in Orange County Superior Court this week, seeking damages for wrongful death and emotional distress.

The Smiths allege that the gunman’s parents, Karen and Dennis Freund, “permitted” their son to keep a weapon in their home, failed to supervise him, and failed to warn and protect them from their son’s violent nature, according to the lawsuit.

Before the murders, Freund e-mailed and posted comments on the WrongPlanet.net website saying he needed a “real life” friend and said he was contemplating suicide.

He also threatened to start “a terror campaign to hurt those that have hurt me.”

The website serves as a support group for people with Asperger’s syndrome, a neurological disorder, described as a variant of autism, which hampers people’s ability to interact socially. Freund suffered from the disorder.

The suit accused the website of failing to alert police, the victims, Freund’s family or any authorities to prevent harm.

WrongPlanet founder Alexander Plank declined to comment Friday, but during an interview last year, he said volunteer moderators in Virginia tried to call Freund’s parents but were unsuccessful.

The Smiths also accused the Saddleback Valley Gun Center and its owner, George Hueneman, of negligently selling the shotgun to a teenager suffering from a disorder.

Hueneman said he ran a state background check on Freund — which came up clean. He said the state did not log a person’s medical history. He said he was not aware of Freund’s condition and that the law did not require him to determine it before selling a him gun.

I can see the merit in a suit against Freund’s parents but as far as the gun dealer and WrongPlanet.net are concerned that part of the lawsuit should be thrown out. As the article states the gun dealer followed the law and WrongPlanet tried contacting Freund’s parents. Granted they should have contacted law enforcement but it’s not like they sat back and did nothing.

Still More on William Freund

Report: Orange County gunman was social outcast, even on the Internet: (Log in info)

This is basically an article about how the Aliso Viejo shooter William Freund found as little social acceptance on the web as he did in real life…

Freund only opened up on the Internet, which he accessed from his computer-filled bedroom at his parents house. The Times said he played online games, discussed movies and TV shows such as “The Outer Limits,” posted reviews of online businesses, bought and sold video games and paintball supplies on eBay.

He left pleas for friendship on some Web sites.

“I’ve never really had a friend,” Freund wrote in one profile. “I’ve never had someone I can share more intimate conversation with, or just have a good time with.”

In more troubling messages, he discussed guns and, in the weeks before his death, talked about his thoughts of suicide.

“I think the only thing to do is go admit myself to a hospital I feel like I need to kill myself,” he wrote in an Oct. 19 post on wrongplanet.com, a Web site for those with Asperger’s syndrome.

In one message, Freund said he planned to “Start a Terror Campaign To hurt those that have hurt me,” and added: “My future ended some time ago.”

Actually, it’s wrongplanet.net but anyway I find it hard to believe he couldn’t even find one friend. Granted he had a disorder that limited his social skills I find it hard to believe there wasn’t one person out there that he couldn’t find a connection with. I previously wrote about how some of the moderators at wrongplanet.net tried to contact Freund’s family after posting on their forum. If no one on that forum cared for him then why did they try to help him?

According to the article, Freund was ridiculed on the Something Awful forums…

In a firearms forum on the Web site somethingawful.com, Freund talked about staging a “Halloween shootout” to get even with pranksters who vandalized his pumpkin last Halloween.

That was met with ridicule.

“I can imagine this mongoloid, sitting on his creaky porch, one strap on his overalls, leaping up and running to the defense of his precious 24-ounce pumpkin,” read one response.

Freund’s comments got him banned from the Web site three days before his rampage.

There are two problems with the internet. There are a lot of idiots who post ridiculous messages on forums just to get attention and there are people who feel the need to belittle others to make themselves feel good. So it was hard to tell that this was a credible threat or not. And if Freund was planning on sitting out on his porch with a shotgun then again it goes to show that the attack was premeditated.

However, the questions still remain why did he target the Smiths and where did he obtain the shotgun?

The article seems to almost excuse Freund’s killing spree because of the harassment he received combined with his disorder. Aspergers does not limit your ability to determine what is right and wrong. Freund must have had some other issues. I wouldn’t be surprised if they dig a little deeper and found that he was researching school shootings or other killing sprees.

Something Awful about William Freund

One of my readers left a comment yesterday letting me know that someone who is believed to be William Freund posted the following message on the Something Awful Forums

I have a problem. I live in orange county and am trying to buy hevi-shot buckshot, or just winchester if they dont have it. Im 19 Year old And Every shop I go to That has it (grants guns, Saddleback gun store,Yeti gunsmith) Claims its a waste of money and birdshot is better for personal defence.They always ask me why I want to buy hevi shot for my remington 870 home defense,Like im buying some Armour piercing bullets or something.

Shesh!

Is there something against buckshot in the shotgun world, To me bird shot is like less than lethal, you use it if you want your attacked to run around after you shot him, If i have people like last halloween, Bringing out a rifle and shotting my garage and my dads leg (broke the bone and everything) I dont think birdshot will cut it.

Basically IM asking

1. Is birdshot ok for defence

2. Any orange county shop that you know doesnt give you a mouth if you try to buy hevi shot buckshot.

3.Why is buckshot like the new ak-47 barrel, its taboo.

Im currently at work atm, And dont think I could get my dad to show his legs on the internet…So no pics,sorry.

If William Freund, in fact, posted this it goes to show that the attack was premeditated and not something brought on by his mental illness. I’m still curious as to why he picked the Smith’s as his victims. Was it random or was there some sort of connection?

TOF to reader Hugo.

More on William Freund

Gunman posted plan: (Log in info)

More information is coming out about William Freund the 19-year-old kid who went on a shooting spree in his California neighborhood killing two before turning his shotgun on himself.

Another disturbing post he made on the Asperger syndrome support forum…

“I’m going cause a lot of damage with my Remington 870,” he said in an Oct. 15 posting. “And is super heavy to whack people with. … Not I have never whacked anyone but I’m guessing that’s why its so heavy.” He went on to say in the message, “I look forward for the 870, a gun made since the 1950s In blowing some parts of me out of 2006 style with some of the latest ammo.”

And a familiar theme is starting to emerge…

Lonnie Pestano, a longtime Freund family friend, painted a picture of Freund as a “painfully shy” boy she met about 16 years ago. He was quick to smile and hug those nearby, and “wouldn’t hurt a fly.” Pestano said Freund’s mother spoke often of school bullying, saying that Freund was spit on and had his head put in the toilet.

And…

“There has been some discussion about whether Asperger’s has anything to do with what he did,” said Grover. “It sounds like he was picked on a lot and those of us with Asperger’s have symptoms that cause us to be picked on. We don’t speak in the right tone, don’t look people in the eye, we don’t read body language. Some people pick on us for that.”

I don’t doubt that William Freund was picked on because of his condition. Yesterday I was a little more forgiving because of his condition but not anymore. Asperger’s doesn’t affect your ability to tell the difference between right and wrong. Not only that why did he choose Vernon and Christina Smith, a father, and daughter, as his victims?

What I’m also afraid of is that if God forbid there should be any future shootings like this where the shooter claims to be bullied that they may all of a sudden contract Asperger’s.

Willaim Freund's cry for help

Killer Sought Solace Online:

This is more about William Freund, the 19-year-old California kid who donned a cape and a paintball helmet and shot two of his neighbors with a shotgun before turning the gun on himself. Freund had a form of autism called Asperger’s syndrome. One of the main characteristics of Asperger’s is a problem with social interaction. On a message board for people with Asperger’s Freund wrote some disturbing and foreboding messages…

He wrote more than two dozen online messages in October, asking for a “real life” friend and saying he was contemplating suicide. He also threatened to start “a Terror Campaign to hurt those that have hurt me.”

The messages paint a portrait of a troubled young man struggling with Asperger’s syndrome, a neurological disorder described as a variant of autism that hampers people’s ability to interact socially. He revealed his anguish and frustration on a website, wrongplanet.net, used by people with Asperger’s.

In a prophetic message written Oct. 16, about the “Terror Campaign,” he also said, “My future ended some time ago.” Other postings included “Everybody hates me” and “I feel like I need to kill myself.” He also disclosed that he had bought a 12-gauge shotgun and had gone online to buy ammunition.

Members of the online community for Asperger’s tried to reassure Freund and offer suggestions, and volunteer moderators tried to find his parents.

Their efforts failed.

In his online profile, Freund described himself as an only child of adoptive parents, a student at ITT Technical Institute in Anaheim who enjoyed “computers, role playing, fantasy, pugs, Food, guns.” He graduated from Aliso Niguel High School in 2004, the same school as Christina Smith, who graduated in 2001.

His online messages were filled with spelling and grammatical errors, alternately depicting a self-aware person desperately seeking help and a frustrated, angry man who wanted to lash out at others.

On Oct. 15 he said he had tried suicide before. “Ive Tried Everythink from asphxia, To lethal gases, Inert Gases To full suspended hanging … my minds Sick With depression.”

The next day, he said that if he made it to Halloween, he planned to equip himself with body armor, an airgun and a laser to “just scare any little kids that try to destroy my pumpkin … and guess what I have A real shotgun. It’s gona be a fun Halloween,” he wrote.

On Oct. 19, he asked for references to a mental hospital, saying that he needed counseling and social skills training. He also said he had no friends. He wrote that he wished he had some, emphasizing it with 75 exclamation points.

The moderators at wrongplanet.net even tried to contact Freund’s parents in order to help him…

Alexander Plank, 19, the founder of wrongplanet.net, said volunteer moderators who monitored messages had been concerned about Freund’s postings and took action.

“People at our site tried to contact his parents, but apparently there are a lot of Freunds in Orange County,” Plank said. There are 38 Freunds registered to vote.

Moderators also blocked Freund from posting links to pro-suicide websites, said Plank, a freshman computer science major at George Mason University in Northern Virginia.

After seeing articles about the weekend shooting, Plank said, he called the Orange County Sheriff’s Department. By Monday evening, some of Freund’s messages had been removed from the website.

So basically what I think we have here is a kid with a legitimate mental illness, if you will, who didn’t get the right kind of help in time. Unfortunately, three people are dead because of it. And that’s all it should be. However, some people are going to make more out of it…

Blake Melcher, 21, of Laguna Niguel said many students had picked on Freund since middle school. “It happens at all schools, where some kids are always picked on,” he said.

Some people are going to hold the people who picked on Freund responsible for the deaths of Freund’s victims and Freund himself. They are not responsible. While I wish just as much as anybody that Freund wasn’t picked on it’s ultimately Freund’s responsibility due to his illness.

I guess the question is now how he obtained the shotgun…

In one online message, Freund said he had “no friends, all enemies” and bought the shotgun for home defense.

William Freund

3 fatal shootings, zero explanations: (Log in info)

I caught this story over the weekend while on vacation. 19-year-old William Freund donned a cape and paintball helmet and went on a killing spree with a shotgun in his Aliso Viejo neighborhood in California…

Freund is believed to have entered the Smith home through an unlocked door, and then shot and killed Vernon Smith, 45, and daughter Christina Smith, 22, Amormino said. A son, whom neighbors identified as Brandon Smith, 20, escaped from the home without being injured, he said. Vernon Smith’s wife, Denise, was at work at the time of the shooting.

Freund then turned the weapon himself.

No motive has been given as of yet but neighbors have described him as “the quiet type” and “a loner”.