Navy Yard Shooter Was Working for Fort Lauderdale Company
According to its website, The Experts, a Fort Lauderdale company, is "a global provider of IT, engineering, telecom and business process solutions" with operations around the world and "personnel supporting the war fighter abroad and domestic policy at home."
Apparently, one of those personnel members, 34-year-old Aaron Alexis, went on to kill a dozen people in Washington, D.C., this week in a mass shooting at the Washington Navy Yard.
Now questions are arising about how much the company knew regarding Alexis' mental instability.
The company issued a statement that reads:
The Experts would like to express our deepest condolences and sympathies regarding the incident that occurred at the DC Naval Yards. We are cooperating fully with the FBI and other authorities in relation to the investigation on the suspect.
At this time, we can confirm that the suspect had been employed by The Experts for approximately six months over the last year, during which time we enlisted a service to perform two background checks and we confirmed twice through the Department of Defense his Secret government clearance. The latest background check and security clearance confirmation were in late June of 2013 and revealed no issues other than one minor traffic violation.
The Washington Post reports that Alexis was on a team that was upgrading computers and that people he worked with had expressed concerns about his job performance.
From the Post:
"He was not doing a very good job, and somebody told him that there was a problem," one law enforcement official said. "Our belief is that the people who were shot first were people he had issues with where he worked, people he had some sort of a dispute with. After that, it became random... After the first shootings in that office, he moved around and shot people he came upon. They were then targets of opportunity."
Company CEO Thomas E. Hoshko told the New York Times that Alexis had worked for the company on various military bases after his honorable discharge from the Navy in 2011 and that the company would never have hired him if it had known that Alexis was twice investigated by police for shootings -- "once for firing through his ceiling in Fort Worth, Tex., and another time for shooting out a car's tires in Seattle, during what he described as an anger-fueled blackout," according to the Times.
In another article, the Times reported that Alexis had been disturbing people at his hotel and claiming to hear voices. Hotel records show a message from August 7 -- six weeks prior to the killings:
"Brenda from The Experts Inc. called re: Mr. Alexis in 407," a Residence Inn employee noted in a log dated Aug. 7 that was reviewed by The New York Times.
"She explained that he is unstable and the company is bringing him home," the entry continued. "She asked me to check the room (it was vacant), and check him out."
Company officials said that when Alexis complained of hearing voices, they thought he meant the hotel was too loud.
Get the Things to Do Newsletter
Find out about upcoming events and special offers happening in South Florida.