The former FedEx worker who gunned down eight people at an Indianapolis facility was not motivated by racial bias or ideology – but went on his shooting rampage to “demonstrate his masculinity,” according to officials.
Brandon Scott Hole, 19, who last worked at the company in 2020, turned the gun on himself after killing eight people and injuring several others during his attack in April. Half of the victims belonged to the Sikh community, whose religion originated in the Punjab state of India.
Local and federal officials said during a press conference Wednesday that the shooting was “an act of suicidal murder” in which Hole decided to kill himself “in a way he believed would demonstrate his masculinity and capability while fulfilling a final desire to experience killing people,” the Indianapolis Star reported.
“Only the shooter knows all the reasons why he committed this horrific act of violence,” said Paul Keenan, the FBI’s Indianapolis special agent in charge, adding that he “did not appear to have been motivated by bias or desire to advance any ideology.”
He said that “at this time, the FBI is confident that based on the evidence collected, the assessment of the (FBI) Behavioral Analysis Unit is accurate.”
Investigators reviewed “computers, phones, everything. There was some viewing of mainly World War II, Nazi type propaganda, Keenan said.
“It was an extremely small percentage of overall viewing. I believe we reviewed about 175,000 files (in) this computer and it was somewhere in the neighborhood of less than 200 files mainly of German military, German Nazi things,” he said.
“But there was no indication that there was any animosity towards the Sikh community, or any other group for that matter,” he added.
Investigators believe he targeted his former workplace on April 15 not because he was trying to correct a perceived injustice, but because he was familiar with the “pattern of activity” at the facility, according to the newspaper.
Hole’s focus on proving his masculinity was partly related to a failed attempt to live on his own, Keenan said.
Hole, who had aspired to join the military, had been eating MREs — or meals ready-to-eat — like those consumed by troops, according to officials.
Keenan also said Hole had suicidal thoughts that “occurred almost daily” in the months leading up to his attack, according to the news outlet, which has reported that police responded to him home in March 2020 for a mental health check.
Hole was placed under detention at a local hospital and a gun he had recently bought was confiscated, but he ended up buying more firearms, which he used in rampage, according to police.