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Acquaintance of Alexandria shooting suspect: 'He could have a short temper'

15 June 2017

The suspected shooter in today's incident in Virginia is 66-year-old James T. Hodgkinson of Belleville, Illinois, according to multiple law enforcement sources.

Hodgkinson's apparent Facebook profile page is an image of Sanders as "Uncle Sam" and one recent post from June 12 carries this message from Hodgkinson: "I want to say Mr. President for being an Asshole, you are Truly the Biggest Ass Hole We Have Ever Had in the Oval Office".

Hodgkinson apparently wrote many letters to the editor of his local newspaper, the Belleville News-Democrat, which published almost two dozen of them between 2010 and 2012.

In this April 17, 2012, photo, James Hodgkinson of Belleville protests outside of the United States Post Office in Downtown Belleville, Ill. He said he was preparing to leave the baseball field when a man politely asked him whether it was a Democratic or Republican team before quietly walking off.

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Sanders said on the floor of the Senate Wednesday that "I am sickened by this despicable act".

The report says Hodgkinson resorted to dragging his daughter out of her friend's auto, slashing her seatbelt, and punching his daughter's friend in the face.

In another letter, he called for an overhaul of the federal tax code to raise income tax rates on the rich and said, "God bless the 99 percent".

A real estate agent who has worked with Hodgkinson told the News-Democrat that "from a business standpoint, he did not seem like he is a radical - opinionated but not a radical". "When he did home inspections for me, he didn't rile up the buyers or make ridiculous statements".

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Hodgkinson had arrests in his background for a series of minor offenses and at least one more serious matter. Hodgkinson was charged with two counts of battery, aggravated discharge of a firearm, criminal damage to a motor vehicle and two counts of domestic battery. Hodgkinson struck Fernandez on the side of his face with the wooden stock of the shotgun and fired off one round as Fernandez ran away.

A deputy responded shortly after 3:05 p.m. and found that Hodgkinson "did have in his possession a valid Illinois FOID [firearms owner identification] card", and that the deputy advised Hodgkinson "to not discharge his weapon in the area". However, records show that the charges were dismissed. She said he has been living in Alexandria, Virginia, for the past two months. But Bost said that in his correspondence, Hodgkinson "never appeared threatening or raised concerns that [he would ] would turn to physical action".

After the attack on Wednesday, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch sent a reporter to Hodgkinson's house.

This is adeveloping story. "We are strongest when we are unified and we work together for the common good", Trump said. We will focus on reports from police officials and other authorities, credible news outlets and reporters who are at the scene.

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Acquaintance of Alexandria shooting suspect: 'He could have a short temper'