Maine mass shooter had traumatic brain injuries, new scan finds

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The man who killed 18 group successful a mass shooting past twelvemonth successful Lewiston, Maine, had traumatic encephalon injuries that apt influenced his actions successful nan last months of his life, according to caller study released Wednesday.

Army reservist Robert Card, 40, carried retired nan shootings astatine a bowling alley and a barroom connected Oct. 25, sparking a multistate manhunt that ended when he was recovered dead days later, having taken his ain life pinch a shotgun.

The Maine main aesculapian examiner’s agency requested nan post-mortem study of Card’s brain, which was carried retired by Boston University CTE Center and released by Card's family.

"Robert Card had grounds of traumatic encephalon injury. In nan achromatic matter, nan nervus fibers that let for connection betwixt different areas of nan brain, location was important degeneration, axonal and myelin loss, inflammation, and mini humor alloy injury," lead writer Ann McKee said successful a connection issued by nan family and nan Concussion Legacy Foundation.

The family apologized for nan onslaught and said they hoped that publicizing nan findings of nan scan mightiness thief “prevent early tragedies.”

The findings align pinch erstwhile studies connected nan effects of blast injuries, McKee said. Card was a firearms coach and worked astatine an Army manus grenade training range, wherever he whitethorn person been exposed to thousands of blasts, nan connection said.

“While I cannot opportunity pinch certainty that these pathological findings underlie Mr. Card’s behavioral changes successful nan past 10 months of life, based connected our erstwhile work, encephalon wounded apt played a domiciled successful his symptoms,” she continued.

Card was suffering an acute intelligence wellness episode astatine nan clip of nan shooting, his family said, and had begun to perceive voices that led to him forming a paranoid "manic belief" that others were against him. He spent 2 weeks undergoing psychiatric inpatient treatment.

Further studies connected Card’s encephalon are continuing.

Card's family said successful a connection that they were "deeply sorry and heartbroken we are for each nan victims, survivors, and their loved ones."

"While we cannot spell back, we are releasing nan findings of Robert’s encephalon study pinch nan extremity of supporting ongoing efforts to study from this calamity to guarantee it ne'er happens again," they said.

The family added that nan caller grounds does "not afloat explicate Robert’s actions, nor is it an excuse for nan horrific suffering he caused."

But they thanked McKee for helping them understand his encephalon harm and really it whitethorn person impacted his intelligence health. The family said they dream nan merchandise of nan findings will raise consciousness of traumatic encephalon injuries among subject personnel.

Army officials will attest Thursday earlier a typical committee investigating nan shooting, which is nan deadliest successful Maine history.

Patrick Smith

Patrick Smith is simply a London-based editor and newsman for NBC News Digital.

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