Perceived Grievances Drove Virginia Beach Gunman to Kill 12, F.B.I. Finds

The FBI said Deven Craddock, a city engineer who went on a shooting rampage in 2019, was “fixed for years” over criticism at the job.

A city engineer was obsessed for years with alleged workplace complaints before the 2019 shooting at a municipal compound in Virginia Beach killed 12 people, the FBI said this week, releasing the findings of a behavioral analysis that said the attacks New insights were provided on the purpose of .

The gunman, Deven Craddock, who was mortally wounded by the police, is separated from his coworkers over how they view him and his own perceptions of his job performance. Findings by the Bureau’s Behavioral Analysis Unit.

The bureau concluded, “The shooter’s heightened sense of self-importance contributed to this conflict and led him to believe that he had been unjustly and repeatedly criticized and humiliated.” “Violence was seen by the shooter as a way of resolving this conflict and restoring his distorted view of justice.”

The findings, which were released Wednesday, offer a measure of explanation for those investigating some of the country’s deadliest mass shootings: the mind-set of a gunman. Many of those shootings remain a mystery, with investigators unable to determine a motive.

The bureau’s findings were in contrast to the Virginia Beach Police Department, which said in March that it probably never know What shook Mr. Craddock.

But the FBI, assisted by local police, said Craddock, 40, a former soldier, had become so lonely that it would be hard to imagine the bloodshed to be accurate.

“They deliberately distanced themselves from relationships to hide their intentions,” the bureau said, adding that “no individual or group was in a position to see a confluence of behavior that may have warned of an attack.” “

The city of Virginia Beach has faced criticism from victims’ families, a reluctance to say what prompted a gunman to open fire in Virginia Beach Municipal Center’s Building Number 2 on May 31, 2019.

On the morning of the shooting, Mr. Craddock, a city employee of about 15 years, sent a resignation email to his bosses.

“Despite thorough investigative work and unfounded rumors and allegations, it appears we may never know why he committed this heinous act,” the Virginia Beach Police Department said in a final investigation report released in March.

A spokesman for the city did not immediately respond to requests for comment on Thursday, but said Washington Post That the FBI’s analysis did not contradict the City’s findings and was an extension of the City-initiated work.

“We asked the FBI to take a look at this because they had a level of expertise in this area that we didn’t have,” spokeswoman Julie Hill said. “It’s part of the work we requested. It wasn’t imposed on us.”

The FBI said it had informed the Virginia Beach Police Department of its findings, adding that the gunman experienced “significant mental health stress” that “contributed to his dismemberment prior to the attack.” “

“However, mental health stress alone cannot explain the Virginia Beach attack,” the bureau said.

Investigators said the gunman was in many ways similar to others who have committed mass shootings and have been studied by the FBI.

“Mass shooting is a violent act, generally with planned and purposeful violence intended to an identified target, person, place or institution,” the bureau said.

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