Maine Governor confirms Lewiston shooting suspect found dead
Days after Robert Card, the suspected gunman in the Maine mass shooting in which 18 people were murdered and 13 others were injured was found dead, Maine begins to heal; now that shelter-in-place orders have been lifted, community members are gathering for vigils and placing signs and dedications around Lewiston in honour of those lost in the tragedy.
Card is believed to have taken his own life after being the subject of a dayslong manhunt after the shocking violence in the city of Lewiston, Maine, and his death was confirmed by law enforcement sources.
The victims, who were officially identified by authorities, ranged in age from 14 to 76 years old.
On Friday morning it was revealed that a note had been found but its content was not disclosed.
Divers had also been searching the river beside which Mr Card’s SUV was found and at one point a lettuce farm was cleared after reports of a gunshot.
A shelter-in-place order was lifted allowing residents of Lewiston, Lisbon, and Bowdoin to leave home for the first time since Wednesday night.
“Americans should not have to live like this,” President Biden said in a statement on Saturday, urging Congress to act to “end this gun violence epidemic.”
Sheila Flynn and Andrea Blanco reporting from Lewiston.
ICYMI: What happened to Robert Card?
Maine’s Public Safety Commissioner Michael Sauschuck confirmed on Friday evening that the body of Robert Card had been found in an area of woodland, some eight miles from the scene of the shootings.
The US Army reserve is believed to have taken his own life in an area near a recycling facility where he had been recently fired from, CNN reported.
Maine Department of Public Safety commissioner Mike Sauschuck said the body had been found at 7.45pm ET, and that he had called the gunman’s family – as well as victims’ families – prior to the press conference.
“They lost a loved one in this scenario, and there were many of that family that was very cooperative with us throughout. So they deserved that phone call,” he said.
Prior to this, Card had not been seen since he allegedly opened fire at the bar in Lewiston on Wednesday night.
Investigators traced his vehicle to a boat landing in Lisbon – around eight miles from the crime scene – just hours later.
Kelly Rissman30 October 2023 00:00
Heartbreaking final text to Maine mass shooting victim who died trying to take down Card, revealed
Thomas “Tommy” Conrad had been planning on doing a pumpkin carving at the bowling alley for the kids in the Lewiston community before a gunman opened fire in a mass shooting that claimed the lives of 18 people.
Now, mourners are leaving Jack-o-lanterns outside Just-In-Time Recreation as a tribute for the 34-year-old manager, who was killed in the attack while trying to take down the shooter.
As news of the massacre broke, Alex McMahan, who co-owns a chain of dispensaries in the area, texted his longtime customer and buddy Conrad: “Are you okay, brother?”
“And he obviously didn’t text back,” Mr McMahan told The Independent.
A GoFundMe created for Conrad’s family describes him as a man who was “devoted to his job, his game and his young daughter, Caroline.”
“He died a hero,” the campaign stated. “He put his life in harm’s way to charge the gunman and save the children who were there.”
Kelly Rissman29 October 2023 23:00
Victims of the shootings are remembered as vigil begins
Kelly Rissman29 October 2023 22:00
A second vigil will be held at 6pm on Sunday
Sunday’s vigil well be held from 6-8pm at the Franco Center in Lewiston to mourn the 18 lives lost in the mass shooting.
Last night, a candlelight vigil was held at Worumbo in Lisbon.
Kelly Rissman29 October 2023 21:30
Scenes from Lewiston as the city heals
Kelly Rissman29 October 2023 21:00
Unanswered questions in the wake of the mass shooting
As the multi-day manhunt came to an end, many questions still swirled about.
What was in the mysterious note?
Could the tragedy have been prevented?
The Independent’s Rachel Sharp investigates…
Kelly Rissman29 October 2023 20:30
What we know about the suspect from social media posts
The suspect showed an interest in right-wing pundits and politics on X, formerly Twitter, before his account was deleted by the company.
He liked posts from Elon Musk, Donald Trump Jr, Tucker Carlson and Jordan Peterson. He appeared to focus on content that expressed anti-trans views, as well as on gun rights, the coronavirus and the economy.
Liking a post does not necessarily signify that he agreed with the content, and there is no indication that it was a political attack.
The suspect’s account on X was captured by Heavy.com before it was deleted by the platform, as per its policy. The profile picture on that account appears to match photographs released by law enforcement.
In March, he liked a tweet from Trump Jnr that said:
“Given the incredible rise of trans/non-binary mass shooters in the last few years… by far the largest group committing as a percentage of population… maybe, rather than talking about guns we should be talking about lunatics pushing their gender affirming bulls*** on our kids?”
He also liked a video post in March from by Carlson, the former Fox News commentator, which was accompanied by the text: “The trans movement, it turns out, is the mirror image of Christianity, and therefore its natural enemy. People who believe they’re God can’t stand to be reminded that they’re not.”
Another theme that drew the suspect’s attention was the coronavirus. He liked several posts that expressed scepticism over vaccines and public health lockdowns.
The suspect followed only a few accounts on the platform, among them a pro-Donald Trump ‘MAGA’ page called Proud Patriots, X owner Musk, Mark Cuban, the business network CNBC and Joe Rogan, according to Heavy.com. He also interacted with a number of accounts of Republican politicians, such as former House speaker Kevin McCarthy and Jim Jordan.
The suspect liked at least two posts from President Joe Biden’s account, relating to his administration’s efforts to tackle inflation and taxes. He also liked several by Jim Cramer, the CNBC host.
Kelly Rissman29 October 2023 20:00
ICYMI: How Robert Card was ultimately found after dayslong manhunt
Public Safety Commissioner Michael Sauschuck revealed that three of Card’s family members were among the first to call in on Wednesday, identifying the person in the suspect photos as Card.
A ‘vehicle of interest’ was also recovered on Wednesday night. The registration showed that the white Subaru station wagon belonged to the Bowdoin resident.
Days later, after police had already twice “cleared” the Maine Recycling Corporation, the owner reportedly called police. He allegedly told authorities that “this individual knows the property” and urged investigators to examine the trailers in the overflow lot, Mr Sauschuck said.
The 40-year-old was found in one of the 60 box trailers in the overflow lot. He is believed to have died by suicide.
Kelly Rissman29 October 2023 19:30
The city of Lewiston mourns the 18 lives lost
On Friday, Alex McMahan returned with “a truckload of flowers” to expand the memorials.
“All of those locations have grown; people have been bringing flowers and poems and prayers and pictures and crosses,” he said Saturday.
Near Just-In-Time Recreation, mourners were also leaving Jack-o-lanterns – because Mr Conrad had been “planning on doing a pumpkin carving at the bowling alley for his nine-year-old daughter and for some of the kids in the community,” Mr McMahan said.
Kelly Rissman29 October 2023 19:00
Kelly Rissman29 October 2023 18:30