Alleged Ohio shooter Connor Betts kept a “hit list” and a “rape list” when he was in high school, Yahoo News reports. He was even suspended from school for having scrawled such a list in a school bathroom.
Two former classmates, who both asked to be anonymous, say that Betts was known to inspire fear at Bellbrook High School, including at least one incident in which nearly a third of the student body skipped school following word of Betts’ list.
In the first incident, Betts allegedly came to school with a list of names of female students he wanted to sexually assault. One student, who was a freshman cheerleader at the time, says she “didn’t really know” Betts and thought nothing of him until she got a call from a police officer telling her that her name was on the list. “The officer said he wouldn’t be at school for a while,” she said. However, after a while, and without her being given any kind of warning, Betts was back at school.
In a second incident in 2012, a “hit list” of names a student wanted to kill was found in a bathroom. Authorities investigated the list, but because the suspect was a juvenile, they didn’t name the alleged author of the list. However, a former student says that at the time it was “common knowledge” around the school that it was Betts. It bears noting that, as of this writing, authorities have still not confirmed that Betts was the author of the list.
Chris Baker, the former Bellbrook High School principal, was asked by The Dayton Daily News if Betts was the one suspended in that incident. “I would not dispute that information, but I don’t want to get involved any more than just making that comment,” he said.
Twitter user Drew Gainey, who was one of Betts’ teammates on a school track team, wrote that one or the other of these incidents should have prevented Betts from being able to purchase guns.
“There was an incident in high school with this shooter that should have prevented him from ever getting his hands on a weapon. This was a tragedy that was 100% avoidable,” he wrote.
Demoy Howell, another former classmate, says that Betts joked about killing people and had a “dark energy” around him.
“I think this is less of a hate crime and more of an ‘I hate everybody’ crime. I honestly feel more comfortable now knowing that he’s gone,” he said.