The teen who allegedly killed nine people before turning the gun on himself has been described as a "towering loner" who had expressed admiration for Adolf Hitler and claimed to have been investigated for a school shooting plot last year.
According to the St. Paul Pioneer Press, the shooter has been identified by fellow Red Lake Indian tribe members as Jeff Weise, who had reportedly posted on an online nationalist forum last April that police investigated him after learning of plans to "shoot up the school on 4/20, Hitlers [sic] birthday." He later claimed in the forum that he had been cleared in the investigation.
Weise is reported to have used names such as "Todesengel" — German for "angel of death" — or "NativeNazi" when identifying himself online.
Weise, a student at Red Lake High School in northern Minnesota, went on a shooting rampage Monday, killing his grandfather and the man's girlfriend at their home and seven people at his school before turning the gun on himself. As many as 15 others were also wounded in the incident, which took place at Red Lake High School around 3 p.m., according to the FBI.
Five students, a female teacher and a male security guard were among those killed at the school, according to an FBI spokesperson. The shooting is the deadliest at a U.S. school since the Columbine High School massacre in Colorado on April 20, 1999, in which 14 students, including the two killers, and a teacher died.
Weise's grandfather, Daryl "Dash" Lussier and his girlfriend, were reportedly shot before the school shootings and died of their injuries at a hospital later in the day. Lussier was a veteran police officer, and police said Weise used his shotgun and two handguns in the shootings.
A student told the Pioneer Press that Weise drove to the school in his grandfather's police vehicle, parked the squad car near the front door and fired two shots at a pair of security guards.
Red Lake police, who were alerted by students on their cell phones, exchanged gunfire with Weise, described by witnesses as "grinning and waving," before he raced into a classroom and shot himself, authorities told Reuters. All of the students who died, including the gunman, were found in the same classroom.
"At this time, we believe he was acting alone," said FBI Special Agent Paul McCabe, who would not comment on a possible motive, saying, "It's far too early in the investigation."
One of the students who hid in a locked classroom adjacent to the one in which most of the bodies were found told the Pioneer Press that shots rang out for nearly a half-hour. The unidentified student said she'd once shared a class with Weise, who had not been attending school recently and was viewed as "weird" by other students. She said she never heard the "anti-social" Weise speak about Nazis, but that he would draw pictures of people with "little hats with Nazi signs on them."
Approximately 300 students attend Red Lake High School, which is located about 240 miles from Minneapolis on the Red Lake Indian Reservation.
Authorities put the school under lockdown following the incident. "It will probably take us throughout the night to really put the whole picture together," McCabe said. There are security cameras both inside and outside the school, and students must go through a metal detector to enter.
Relatives told the Pioneer Press that Weise was teased often at school and that "he snapped." His father committed suicide four years ago, and his mother suffered brain injuries in a car accident and lives in a nursing home in Minnesota.
According to a preliminary investigation, FBI sources said Weise died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
MTVNews.com will continue to update this story as information becomes available.
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This story was originally published at 7:02 pm ET.