Sheriff: What We Know So Far About UCC Shooter

Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlin points to a reporter to take their question concerning the mass shooting at Umpqua Community College, during a news conference Friday, Oct. 2, 2015, in Roseburg, Ore. Armed with multiple guns, Chris Harper Mercer, walked into a class at the community college, Thursday, and opened fire, killing several and wounding others. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)
Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlin points to a reporter to take their question concerning the mass shooting at Umpqua Community College, during a news conference Friday, Oct. 2, 2015, in Roseburg, Ore. Armed with multiple guns, Chris Harper Mercer, walked into a class at the community college, Thursday, and opened fire, killing several and wounding others. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

Portland, OR. (KOIN) — A government official identified 26-year-old Christopher Sean Harper Mercer, 26, as the gunman responsible for killing 9 people and wounding at least 9 others at Umpqua Community College on Thursday.

Mercer was a student at UCC and was enrolled in the class where opened fire, Oregon State Police revealed.

A federal agency says the gunman had body armor and was armed with three pistols, a rifle and five additional magazines.

The U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) provided the information late Thursday in an incident report obtained by The Associated Press. The guns included a 9mm Glock pistol and .40-caliber Smith & Wesson, both traced to the suspect.

He also had a .40-caliber Taurus pistol traced to someone in Portland and a .556-caliber Del-Ton.

Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlin said at a news conference that 6 weapons were recovered at the UCC campus and 7 were found at his apartment.

Celinez Nunez, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives assistant special agent in charge, left, and Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlin, right, hold a press conference Friday, Oct. 2, 2015, in Roseburg, Ore., on the deadly shooting at Umpqua Community College. Armed with multiple guns, Chris Harper Mercer, 26, walked into a classroom at the community college, Thursday, and opened fire, killing several and wounding others. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Celinez Nunez, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives assistant special agent in charge, left, and Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlin, right, hold a press conference Friday, Oct. 2, 2015, in Roseburg, Ore., on the deadly shooting at Umpqua Community College. Armed with multiple guns, Chris Harper Mercer, 26, walked into a classroom at the community college, Thursday, and opened fire, killing several and wounding others. (AP Photo/John Locher)

ATF Assistant Special Agent in Charge Celinez Nunez said at the news conference that all of the weapons were purchased legally, seven of them by the shooter or his family members in the last three years. She says investigators also found a flak jacket next to a rifle at the school, which contained steel plates.

The U.S. Army said the gunman flunked out of basic training in 2008.

Lt. Col. Ben Garrett, an Army spokesman, said Christopher Sean Harper-Mercer was in service at Fort Jackson, South Carolina, starting on Nov. 5, 2008. But by Dec. 11, 2008, he was discharged for failing to meet the minimum administrative standards.

Garrett did not say which standards Harper-Mercer failed to meet. Generally, the Army requires recruits to pass physical fitness tests and to be generally in good physical and mental health. Recruits also must score highly enough on a multiple-choice test covering science, math, reading comprehension and other topics.

Neighbors

“I am shaken, I’m scared. I live right here,” Sharon Ventrone said. “It could have been a lot of us killed yesterday.”

She said she saw Harper-Mercer leave 3 baskets of clothes at the dumpster the day before the shooting.

“It just seemed like he was never coming back again, which he didn’t,” she said.

She said he was seen at the apartment only 30 minutes before the shooting.

“The woman that lives somewhere here said the practical gardeners had seen him barrel out of the apartment, run up against this couch and jump over the fence.”

Ventrone and other neighbors of Christopher Harper-Mercer are struggling.

Another man, Kevin, told KOIN 6 News his “fiancé and son live 20 feet away from this guy while I am at work.”

He said Harper-Mercer was quiet.

“Every time you walk by he rarely acknowledges you so it kind of gets to the point where you don’t really think about it,” he said. “You just kind of quit saying hi.”

Velvet Marks remembers talking to him while she walked her dog. She said her friend in the complex gave Harper-Mercer’s mother a ride recently, and now she wonders if there were signs.

“When she was riding with the mother, they were talking about all different things and she had mentioned her son had been pretty depressed for quite a while,” Marks told KOIN 6 News. “Then they met later and she was introduced to him at the house and the mother mentioned how he just stays on his computer behind a closed door in his room all the time.”

The investigation

CNN reported Friday that writings were recovered from his apartment. Investigators were at his nearby apartment throughout the night.

Sheriff Hanlin added that investigators went door to door in the neighborhoods near the college and the shooter’s apartment to try to learn more details.

He isn’t believed to have a criminal history. Investigators believe he may have been a student there because a receipt found at the scene showed he purchased textbooks from the campus bookstore two days before the shooting.

Gunman among 10 dead at Umpqua Community College

6 Umpqua CC victims in Roseburg, Springfield hospitals

Officers responded to reports of an active shooter at the school around 10:40 a.m.

A neighbor of the 26-year-old shooting suspect said he “seemed really unfriendly” and would often sit by himself on a dark balcony.

Douglas County Sheriff John Hamlin said authorities exchanged gunfire with Mercer in a classroom. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlin points to a reporter to take their question concerning the mass shooting at Umpqua Community College, during a news conference Friday, Oct. 2, 2015, in Roseburg, Ore.  Armed with multiple guns, Chris Harper Mercer, walked into a class at the community college, Thursday, and opened fire, killing several and wounding others. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)
Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlin points to a reporter to take their question concerning the mass shooting at Umpqua Community College, during a news conference Friday, Oct. 2, 2015, in Roseburg, Ore. Armed with multiple guns, Chris Harper Mercer, walked into a class at the community college, Thursday, and opened fire, killing several and wounding others. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

A neighbor of the 26-year-old shooting suspect said he “seemed really unfriendly” and would often sit by himself on a dark balcony.

California

The shooter and his mother reportedly lived in Torrance, California for several years before moving to Oregon. Neighbors said they often kept to themselves.

The Los Angeles Times said one thing stood out to neighbors in Torrance: they sometimes noticed the mother and son carrying black cases that appeared to hold firearms.

David Westly, 45, told the LA Times Mercer and his mother were asked about the weapons at a community barbecue. According to the neighbor, Mercer didn’t respond to the question, but said he enjoyed target shooting.

The suspected shooter’s father, Ian Mercer, spoke to Los Angeles media outside his home on Thursday night.

“I’m just as shocked as anybody at what happened,” he said. “I’ve just been talking to the police and the FBI, really what I know is what you guys know already.”

A Myspace page supposedly belonging to the shooter displays a photo of him holding a gun.

The 26-year-old’s stepsister told CBS Los Angeles he was born in England and traveled to the U.S. as a young boy.

Mercer’s 17-year-old cousin told CBS LA he used to have a temper when they played together as children.

An online dating profile on the website Spiritual Passions appears to belong to the shooter. It lists his hobbies and interests as “internet, killing zombies, movies, music, reading.”

The profile lists his education level as “currently in college” and implies that he lived with his parents.

Other social media profiles suggested he was fascinated by the IRA, frustrated by traditional organized religion and tracked other mass shootings.

On a torrents streaming site and blog that appeared to belong to Mercer, posts referenced multiple shootings and downloads included several horror films and a documentary on a mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.

A blog post urged readers to watch the online footage of Vester Flanagan shooting two former colleagues on live TV in Virginia, while another lamented materialism as preventing spiritual development.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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