A picture is beginning to emerge of 34-year-old Army Spc. Ivan Lopez, who officials have said is the man who opened fire Wednesday at Fort Hood and killed at least three people and wounded another 16 before taking his own life.
The early signs indicate that while Lopez was being treated for depression or some other type of mental issue, he had shown no sign he might be a threat to either himself or others.
As details about him come out, and if some things that officials say turn out to have been mistaken, we’ll update. Meanwhile, here’s a quick look at what’s been reported so far:
Update at 10:40 a.m. ET. No Sign ‘Of Likely Violence’:
“He was seen just last month by a psychiatrist,” Army Secretary John McHugh said this morning of the gunman. “He was fully examined and as of this morning we had no indication [from] the record of that examination that there was any sign of likely violence either to himself or to others.”
McHugh was testifying, as we reported earlier, at a previously scheduled Senate hearing.
Update at 9:55 a.m. ET. ‘He Had A Clean Record’:
The gunman “had a clean record” in the military, and background checks of him “show no involvement with extremist organizations of any kind,” Secretary of the Army John McHugh just said at the top of a previously scheduled Senate hearing. McHugh also told the lawmakers that the soldier had been prescribed multiple prescription drugs, including a sleep aid.
Gen. Ray Odierno, the Army’s chief of staff, said the gunman had been in the Puerto Rico National Guard for nine years before joining the U.S. Army.
The Associated Press adds that “Lopez was from the U.S. territory of Puerto Rico and joined the island’s National Guard in 1999. He went on a peace and security mission to Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula in the mid-2000s, and left the National Guard in 2010 to join the U.S. Army, said Lt. Col. Ruth Diaz, spokeswoman for the Puerto Rico National Guard.”
— On Morning Edition, NPR’s Tom Bowman said Lopez was “a military truck driver … married with a family” and that he had been assigned to Fort Hood in February.
According to Fort Hood’s commander, Lt. Gen. Mark A. Milley, the gunman (whom Milley did not name) was being treated for depression and anxiety before Wednesday’s incident.
There’s no record that Lopez was wounded during a 2011 tour in Iraq, NPR’s Tom Bowman said, but the soldier had “self-reported a traumatic brain injury” — possibly a sign that he had suffered a concussion at some point.
— USA Today says “Lopez arrived at the installation in February from another Army post and had not been assigned to one of the Army Wounded Transition Units, military units that are set up to care for wounded, injured or ill soldiers. Those assigned to these units have case managers who help them track appointments and manage their medical treatments.”
— The Dallas Morning News writes that Lopez served in Iraq for four months. “Police spent Wednesday night searching his apartment in nearby Killeen,” the newspaper adds.
— Lt. Gen. Milley told reporters Wednesday “that the .45-caliber Smith and Wesson handgun used in the shooting was recently purchased locally, and that the suspect was not authorized to carry a concealed weapon,” Stars and Stripes writes.
— The gunman “was in uniform at the time of the shooting,” according to KWTX-TV in Waco.
You are one of the CPR readers who wants to know what is really going on these days. We can help you keep up - The Lookout is a free, daily email newsletter with news and happenings from all over Colorado. Sign up here and we will see you in the morning!