Bernie Sanders 'sickened' by congressional shooter, who allegedly was campaign volunteer
- Author: Zachary Reyes Jun 16, 2017,
Jun 16, 2017, 9:38
That pivot happened rapidly around 11:15 am when CNN confirmed that the alleged shooter was James T. Hodgkinson of IL.
Orear described Hodgkinson as a "quiet guy" who was "very mellow, very reserved" when they stayed overnight at the home of a Sanders supporter in Rock Island, Illinois, after canvassing for the Vermont senator.
The wife of a man who shot a US congressman and four others at a baseball field in Alexandria, Virginia said she had no idea he was going to the Washington D.C. area to commit such a horrific act, KTVI in St. Louis reports.
(Derik Holtmann/Belleville News-Democrat, via AP).
Alexandria Police Chief Michael Brown said in a press conference that five people, including the gunman, were shot.
A gunman opened fire at a Republican baseball practice early Wednesday morning, shooting several attendees.
In recent months, Hodgkinson had been living out of a white cargo van in Alexandria on a block that borders the baseball field, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
President Donald Trump, accompanied by first lady Melania Trump, made a hospital visit on Wednesday evening.
Hodgkinson also hung out on a bench in the park by the baseball field, nearby residents said. He was, in the mayor's words, living out of his gym bag.
"He was this union tradesman, pretty stocky, and we stayed up talking politics", he said. I don't know what he thought about different things. But he ignored a reporter's attempt to ask him questions on the incident.
"I saw the officer get hit, kind of slumping near the SUV", Filous said.
Hodgkinson is believed by investigators to have been a person "of strong views", a senior U.S. official said, without elaborating. It is believed Hodgkinson shot at the politicians and staffers with the SKS rifle.
"I'm sorry that he did this", she added. "Nothing I can really put my finger on, but he was just not a pleasant person". At the time he told his wife that he was moving to work with people to change the tax brackets.
Hodgkinson's Facebook profile featured a cover photo of Sanders, a United States senator from Vermont who ran unsuccessfully to be the Democratic Party's presidential candidate a year ago. Sanders acknowledged Wednesday that Hodgkinson had apparently been among many volunteers on his 2016 campaign.
"We need to vote all Republicans out of office", Hodgkinson wrote in a letter in 2011. Many included complaints about the same theme: income inequality.
Over the years, Hodgkinson has had multiple scrapes with local police and disputes with neighbors and his daughter, records show.
Hodgkinson had arrests in his background for a series of minor offenses and at least one more serious matter. According to the court clerk, the charges were dismissed in November of that year.
Despite this violent history, the Daily Beast notes that Hodgkinson's record "did not rise to the level to prohibit him from legally owning a firearm".
Later, Joel Fernandez, the boyfriend of the woman who was punched, went to Hodgkinson's home to confront him.
"I yelled, 'Quit shooting toward the houses, '" Schaumleffel said. The Schaumleffels said Hodgkinson kept to himself.