Congressional baseball practice shooter acted alone

Malcolm Fuller
June 23, 2017

His attack left Congressman Steve Scalise, two others, and Capitol Police officers Krystal Griner and David Bailey, injured.

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.

Slater said that the shooting appeared to be "spontaneous", and that investigators had not yet determined Hodgkinson's motive.

Authorities revealed Wednesday that Hodgkinson had legally purchased a 7.62 mm caliber SKS rifle in March 2003 and a 9mm handgun after the election in November 2016.

"I would not classify that as a hit list", Slater said.

Hodgkinson, a 66-year-old white male from IL, opened a barrage of gunfire on June 14 at a congressional baseball practice field in Alexandria, Virginia. He remains listed in fair condition in the hospital after undergoing multiple surgeries and is expected to recover. He was also in email communication with Illinois Sens.

At a news conference on Wednesday, FBI officials gave an overview of the evidence they've gathered on Hodgkinson. Four other people were wounded in the incident.

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.

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For most of that window in April, Congress was not in session, and a Sanders spokesman said Wednesday that Hodgkinson did not meet with the senator.

The night before the shooting, Hodgkinson looked up driving directions from Alexandria back to his home in Belleville and also did a Google search for the "2017 Republican Convention", according to online searches reviewed by investigators.

In Belleville, Hodgkinson also had a record of arrests on various criminal charges dating back to 1988, according to St. Clair County, Ill., Circuit Court documents.

Hodgkinson was "struggling in all kinds of different ways", said Slater, of the Washington Field Office. "The morning of the shooting, a witness reported Hodgkinson asking them, 'Is this the Republican or Democrat baseball team?' When the witness responded that it was a Republican event, Hodgkinson reportedly remained at the baseball field".

"Without regard to their personal safety, they stepped up and did what was necessary to protect those around them", said U.S. Capitol Police Chief Matthew Verderosa.

Hodgkinson, who had came to Virginia from Belleville, Illinois, and was living out of his van, had rented a storage locker in Virginia that he visited more than three dozen times between April and June.

While he was prone to rage against the politics of President Trump and was carrying the names of six lawmakers in his pocket at the time he was fatally wounded in an exchange of gunfire with police, federal investigators said they were still at a loss for what drew Hodgkinson to the quiet neighborhood of Del Ray and ultimately to launch the assault in which he fired 60 rounds.

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