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FSU Shooter Was in 'Emotional Crisis'

Florida State University shooter Myron May was in emotional, mental crisis before shooting

In what's now become an all-too-common occurrence, yesterday's news cycle was interrupted with the disturbing news of yet another school shooting. This time, the scene took place at Florida State University, where a former student, 31-year-old Myron May, entered the Strozier Library in the early morning hours and opened fire.

Though he never left the lobby, and didn't even make it past security, May managed to fire off several rounds, striking three students.

"The suspect did not comply with the commands, and actually shot at one of the officers," Tallahassee police spokesman David Northway said. "They returned fire, and the subject was killed."

But just what was May doing there in the library that day? Investigators are still trying to piece that together. What is known is that May graduated almost 10 years ago from FSU, back in 2005. Since then he went on to attend Texas Tech University, where he studied law before practicing it in Texas and New Mexico. According to Police Chief Michael DeLeo, May only moved back to the Tallahassee area a few weeks ago.

During a press conference yesterday, DeLeo also shared that initial investigations had already turned up written journals and videos. In them, May revealed his fear over "being targeted"—though by whom exactly, was not made clear—and that he wanted to "bring attention to the issue of being targeted." The police chief added that it was clear May was in a "state of crisis" and acted alone, after searching May's car, reviewing his cellphone records and texts, and interviewing 20-25 primary witnesses.

"We have not found any information at this time to indicate why he chose this morning to act, or why he chose the Strozier Library as the place for his actions," said DeLeo.

Yet since yesterday, new details about May's emotional and mental state have continued to flood in. The 31-year-old, who grew up as a foster child, had managed to reach great success as a lawyer. But his recent erratic behavior forced him to resign and greatly worried friends around him. It also led his ex-girlfriend to fear he would harm himself.

A September police report, which was filed after an incident at his law firm, highlights the severity of May's declining mental state.

"He advised me that over the past two weeks he was almost certain that there was [a] camera somewhere located in the interior of his residence," a police officer detailed in the report. "He believes he was being watched and observed. He stated that he can constantly hear voices coming through the walls specifically talking about actions he was doing."

According to ABC News, May also told the officer that there was a specific incident that led him to believe he was being watched. It happened one day when he emerged from a bubble bath and started to put lotion on. "At which point he specifically stated he heard voices say, 'Did you see that, he never puts lotion on,'" the affidavit stated.

This morning, it was revealed that before the shooting, May told eight of his friends that they would be "receiving packages"—though it is not yet clear what might be inside.

As for May's victims, one remains in critical condition at Tallahassee Medical HealthCare, while another victim, who was shot in the leg, appears to be doing well. The third was only grazed by a bullet, and released that same day. Meanwhile, stories of narrow escapes have also emerged through the media frenzy—like that of Jason Derfuss, who was shot in the back, but saved when the bullet was stopped by the copy of "The Oxford Context of Wyclif's Thought" he had in his backpack.



Photo via ABCNews
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