The Walmart supervisor who shot and killed six associates at a store in Chesapeake, Virginia, late Tuesday purchased a gun just hours before the massacre and left a note on his phone, describing how he planned to target. Some associates and spare others, according to new details released by Chesapeake Police on Friday.
As friends and relatives of the victims mourned, with a candlelight vigil planned by the city for Monday, the new details provided the first indication of what led to the outbreak of workplace violence, which took place as members of what was described as a nearby crime scene. The -knit team met overnight in a Walmart break room.
Police said an analysis of the phone of the gunman, 31-year-old Andre Bing, revealed the message, in which he said employees at the store mocked him and compared him to a serial killer. In what he called a “death note,” the gunman said he would not kill an employee who had cancer because his mother had died of the disease.
“God forgive me for what I’m going to do…” the note ended, according to photos Chesapeake City officials shared on Twitter. The officials did not say when the memo was written.
New details released on Friday indicated the ease with which the gunman purchased the 9mm pistol used in the killing. “The gun was purchased legally from a local store Tuesday morning,” the city said in a statement. He has no criminal history.
A witness stated that the gunman opened fire around 10:00 pm without warning after entering the rest room. Among the victims were several employees who had worked with him for years – Randall Blevins, Lorenzo Gamble, Brian Pendleton – and others who had recently joined the crew, Kelly Pyle and Tenika Johnson. One of the victims was a 16-year-old boy whose name has not been released.
This developing story will be updated.