Tragedy struck on Thursday afternoon at Oregon’s Umpqua Community College when gunman Chris Harper Mercer opened fire and killed 10 people while wounding numerous others. For almost an entire day, there was not a lot known about the young man, and misinformation was coming out in large amounts. Now, it’s time to look at everything that is known so far about him and see what may have led to the massacre.
Chris Harper Mercer is 26-years-old, and he had social media profiles that featured a lot of content supporting the IRA, according to The Telegraph. He had an extensive life online that consisted of numerous identities that police are currently investigating and looking into more that could come forth about his personality.
In the shooting, reports had him using an AR-15 rifle.
He had a MySpace page which as many may know, is not one of the most popular forms of social media anymore and hasn’t been for years. A number of photographs appear on the page, including the one above which has him holding what appears to be a rifle at his side.
Other photos he posted on his MySpace page include IRA gunman in masks and brandishing weapons.
NBC News reports that Chris Harper Mercer, who was killed in a gun battle with police at Umpqua Community College in Oregon, was a withdrawn person who kept to himself.
Public records do show that only one person with the name of Christopher Harper Mercer was born in Los Angeles County in 1989. As of Friday morning, police would still not confirm the shooter’s identity as they did not want to “glorify” the actions of Thursday morning.
A motive is still not known either, but it was revealed that he did target Christians during his rampage. It’s been said that he would have people identify their religion and make Christians stand up. Witnesses said he would then tell them they were “about to meet God in a few seconds” before shooting them.
Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlin said there were no “specific red flags” about Mercer.
“He is a local resident and I know personally I haven’t heard of any warning signs coming from this person.”
On Harper Mercer’s MySpace account, he had a lot of descriptions of himself that showed he was looking for someone to share life with him. Still, he had some information that a number of people have seen as “strange” or “different.”
“Looking for someone who shares my beliefs, and is similar to me,” the profile says, listing “Internet, killing zombies, movies, music” and reading among hobbies and interests.
The profile describes “not religious, but spiritual” beliefs and was linked to a group called “doesn’t like organized religion.”
Listed in his MySpace profile were movie choices in the genres of sci-fi and horror, but it also said he liked romantic comedies. It said that Chris Harper Mercer was “shy at first, but warm up quickly” and he was often “better in small groups.”
Anyone that was a friend or acquaintance of Mercer said that this description was very consistent with how he was and interacted. It was confirmed by former Los Angeles neighbors that he had lived in a downstairs apartment of his mother’s home before moving to Oregon.
Mercer’s father said that his son really was “a nice guy” who always “put everyone before himself.”
On a dating site called “Spiritual Passions,” there were a number of other things made perfectly clear. One was that he hated organized religion, but still considered himself to be a spiritual person in his life.
There is still not a lot known about Chris Harper Mercer, and much more is likely to come out about him as police continue their investigation. The shooting at Umpqua Community College in Oregon still has a lot that hasn’t yet been revealed about it, and more information will come out as the investigation continues.
[Images via Getty Images – Michael Lloyd/MySpace]