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Neighbors of Virginia Beach mass shooting gunman say he 'kept to himself'

Immediate neighbors describe the shooter as a man who kept to himself and wouldn't assume he would have guns.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — What used to be a home is now a vacant condo on Adkins Arch. 

Overnight, neighbors said they saw law enforcement use a flashbang to blow down the door and go inside to collect evidence from the suspected shooter's residence.

Amanda Archer and Cassetty Howerin lived downstairs to DeWayne Craddock for more than a year.

Howerin said their neighbor had a routine and kept to himself. She said, “no visitors, and when he would walk around its one set of footsteps."

The last time they saw him, Friday morning, he got into his car around 6 a.m. 

“It was not out of the normal for him,” said Howerin.

The two didn’t think twice about their neighbor owning guns or having cameras pointing out his windows.

“We’d jokingly say ‘oh DeWayne’s got cameras in his house. So, if anybody was ever to come around, it’d be fine.’ I never thought that the person that could’ve come around would be him,” said Archer.

Now, 12 people are dead, and it’s especially chilling to Howerin because she said she works for the city of Virginia Beach.

She said, “the count (number of deaths) could’ve been a lot higher and I’m very grateful that it wasn’t.”

The roommate’s family and friends are just as shocked.

“You can talk to a person every day and think you know them, and you never do,” said Archer’s father.

“It’s just one of those things that you never think would be that close to where you’re at or someone you may know,” said friend, Jarris Scott.

Even with close proximity, these neighbors believe no one can answer the main question "why did this shooting happen?"

“No one will ever really know. We’ll always have ideas but the only person that can tell you was him,” said Howerin.

The suspect served as a soldier in the Virginia National Guard. 

He left the National Guard in 2002.

Dewayne A. Craddock enlisted in the Virginia National Guard in April 1996, according to VNG Public Affairs Officer Cotton Puryear.

He was assigned to the Norfolk-based 1st Battalion, 111th Field Artillery Regiment, 116th Infantry Brigade Combat Team as a 13B cannon crew member. 

He was discharged in April 15, 2002, and held the rank of specialist at the time of his discharge.  His records do not indicate any overseas deployments.

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