The PJ Tatler

FBI Confirms Chattanooga Shooter Mohammod Youssuf Abdulazeez, Says Motive Speculation 'Premature'

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The Federal Bureau of Investigation confirmed the identity of the Chattanooga gunman who killed four Marines today as Mohammod Youssuf Abdulazeez, 24.

“The FBI’s Knoxville Field Office, along with the Chattanooga Police Department and other law enforcement partners, are working jointly to investigate today’s shootings at a military recruitment center and a reserve center in Chattanooga, Tennessee in which four individuals were killed and three injured,” the Bureau said in a statement.

Abdulazeez, who first targeted a recruiting office in a strip mall, was also killed in a shootout with police outside of a Navy Reserve facility, where the four Marines were shot to death.

“While it would be premature to speculate on the motives of the shooter at this time, we will conduct a thorough investigation of this tragedy and provide updates as they are available,” the FBI said.

Abdulazeez was apparently not on the FBI’s radar. He was, however, arrested three months ago for a driving under the influence first offense, according to a Hamilton County Jail Booking Report.

He was reportedly born in Kuwait and was a Jordanian citizen. He lived with his family in Hixson, Tenn., and had an electrical engineering degree from the University of Tennessee.

Defense Secretary Ashton Carter issued a statement noting that he learned of the shootings “with a heavy heart.”

“My thoughts and prayers – along with those of the men and women of the Department of Defense – are with the families of those killed in this senseless act of violence and with all those touched by this tragedy, including our Navy and Marine Corps family,” Carter said. “I am grateful to local law enforcement for their swift response. The department will continue to work with local law enforcement as they investigate this heinous crime and will support our military families in their time of grief.”

The names of those killed have not been released pending notification of next of kin, per standard military protocol.

In the Oval Office this evening, President Obama said he received a briefing on the shooting from FBI Director James Comey and the White House team.

“We don’t know yet all the details. We know that what appears to be a lone gunman carried out these attacks. We’ve identified a name. And at this point, a full investigation is taking place,” Obama said. “…We’ve also been in contact with the Department of Defense to make sure that all our Defense facilities are properly attentive and vigilant as we sort through exactly what happened.”

“We take all shootings very seriously. Obviously, when you have an attack on a U.S. military facility, then we have to make sure that we have all the information necessary to make an assessment in terms of how this attack took place, and what further precautions we can take in the future. And as we have more information, we’ll let the public know.”