Jacksonville gunman stayed in room after dropping out of college, losing job, father says in 911 audio

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — The Jacksonville shooter used to work at a dollar store and stopped in at one before a security guard’s presence apparently led him to instead target the Dollar General down the road, where he killed three people.

He worked at a Dollar Tree from October 2021 to July 2022, Jacksonville Sheriff T.K. Waters said at a news conference Monday. And, the sheriff said, he stopped at a Family Dollar store Saturday before pulling into a parking lot at Edward Waters University, where he donned tactical gear. He left when security approached.

“Based off what we saw: him stopping off at the Family Dollar and working at a Dollar Tree previously and then him going to Dollar General, that was his intent the whole time,” Waters said. “Why that store? Still hard to tell.”

In audio released Tuesday from a 911 call, the gunman’s father said his son had stopped taking psychiatric medication and stayed in his room after dropping out of college and losing his job. Other records show the 21-year-old had encounters with police as a teenager, including one involving a suicide threat that led to an involuntary psychiatric evaluation.