Posted on | January 27, 2014 | 78 Comments
Darion Marcus Aguilar, 19, has been named as the gunman who killed two people Saturday at the Columbia mall near Baltimore:
Why Darion Marcus Aguilar shot two people to death and then killed himself is still a mystery to police. They’re investigating who the 19-year-old man was and whether he even knew the people he shot Saturday.
“I know there’s a lot of interest in the motive for this, and I have as much interest in that as anybody,” Howard County Police Chief Bill McMahon told reporters Sunday.
He said there was still no known relationship between the shooter and his victims, though he did not rule out the possibility that there was one.
Police said that Aguilar showed up at The Mall in Columbia in a taxi and stayed in a “generally confined area” before going to Zumiez, a shop that caters to skaters, on the second floor.
There he fired six to nine shots, killing 21-year-old Brianna Benlolo and 25-year-old Tyler Johnson before turning the shotgun on himself.
Howard County detectives have seized a diary from the home of Aguilar which expressed unhappiness with his life.
The Prince George’s County Police Department said it received a missing persons report for Aguilar at about 1:40 p.m. Saturday, more than two hours after the mall shooting. Officers went to Aguilar’s home to speak with his mother about 5 p.m. and saw Aguilar’s journal. The portion the officer read made him concerned for Aguilar’s safety, the department said.
Police began tracking Aguilar’s phone and soon discovered it was at the mall.
Howard County Police Chief William McMahon said the journal expressed general unhappiness, but he did not give any specifics about the writings. . . .
His dumbfounded mother described him as ‘a gentle, sweet kid’ who has never been interested in guns. . . .
‘If you were to go in his room you would see what a gentle sweet kid he was,’ she said, adding that he was a vegetarian because he was concerned about animal welfare.
‘I don’t know what happened, I really don’t. It’s so unusual, you can talk to any of his friends and find out what a gentle person he was.
‘I don’t know, he’s never had a gun before, never been interested in guns or anything like that. I just don’t know what happened, I just don’t know what happened.’
The woman, who didn’t give her name, told reporters she didn’t believe her son knew his victims, contradicting earlier local radio reports that he had dated Benlolo. . . .
His friend, Ellis Cropper, told ABC News that Aguilar worked at a local Dunkin Donuts where he’d just got a promotion and was planning on enrolling in college.
‘Darion was a good kid,’ he said. ‘I don’t know what happened … Darion is quiet, kept to himself. Nice, normal, calm demeanor.’ . . .
Aguilar graduated in 2013 from James Hubert Blake High School in Silver Spring, said Dana Tofig, a Montgomery County schools spokesman.
A person who attended the high school with Aguilar told The Associated Press that he was an avid skateboarder. . . .
Benlolo’s grandfather, John Feins, said in a telephone interview from Florida that his granddaughter had a two-year-old son and that the job at Zumiez was her first since she went back to work after her son’s birth.
‘She was all excited because she was the manager there,’ he said.
He said he had spoken with his daughter, Brianna’s mother, earlier in the day, but didn’t know who the gunman was or whether the person knew his granddaughter.
‘It’s senseless. It’s totally, totally senseless,’ he said.
He described his daughter’s family as a military family that had moved frequently and had been in Colorado before moving to Maryland about two years ago.
To summarize: This was a senseless crime committed by someone with no discernible political motive, but who was definitely not a right-wing Tea Party extremist, and therefore liberals will quickly forget it, except to use it as a statistic to advocate gun control, despite the fact that (a) Maryland has fairly strict laws that limit concealed carry, and (b) the shooter used a shotgun, the very weapon recommended by Vice President Joe Biden.
But the news did not entirely shock another Blake classmate, Aaron Gayadeen.
“He was always a little bit crazy,” Gayadeen said through Facebook messages. “To be honest I am a little in shock that it was him but I’m not too surprised. .?.?. He would always talk about what it would be like to stab someone but he would always gimme a weird look then laugh and say ‘just kidding.’?”
Gayadeen said Aguilar would make these remarks in jest during spare time in a pre-engineering class, an elective they took to graduate. “He would be like, ‘I wonder what it feels like to stab someone. A knife piercing thru someone’s skin.’?”
Well, this doesn’t fit the far-right tea party Second Amendment profile.
A black dude with an Hispanic surname.