VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — The Virginia Beach Police Department updated city council members on the criminal investigation into the deadly mass shooting that took place at the Virginia Beach Municipal Center on May 31.
The update came at the city council meeting, and the presentation included details about the shooter and his work history.
At the start of the meeting, Virginia Beach's Mayor Bobby Dyer said he hopes the update tonight will provide “a more detailed picture of the suspect and what happened on May 31.”
Before the update to the criminal investigation began, City Auditor Lyndon Remias said the full report of the separate, third-party, independent investigation would be posted online when it completed.
Hillard Heintze is the security risk management consulting firm handling the independent investigation. Its CEO, Arnette F. Heintze also addressed council members at the meeting. The focus of his firm's investigation included the shooter's employment history, reviewing city policy, and making procedural recommendations based on its findings
Although the original timeline for the independent investigation said its results would be available in mid-October, Heintze said the timeline had been extended to November 12 for several reasons including the level of outreach and engagement and thousands of pieces of "electronic communication."
Virginia Beach Deputy Chief Patrick Gallagher took the stand and gave an update into their investigation. He said the suspect in the shooting had no manifesto, no personal emails or documents to lead the investigations, no domestic violence investigations, nothing.
The police department said they still cannot confirm why he did what he did.
Police looked into the suspect's physical health, financial stressors, or workplace encounters. They said nothing out of the ordinary showed up. When individuals were interviewed they said the suspect was described as quiet, polite, a nice guy, and a good listener.
Police said he showed no indicators of potential violent behavior before the attack and did not leave a note or a plan.
At this point in the investigation, police could not find evidence of mental health treatment, no prescriptions, and hadn't seen a doctor in two years.
Police did mention that the shooter's family described him as "isolated, paranoid, and uncomfortable around people" after 2017, which is when he and his wife got divorced after their separation in 2016.
Officials are 116 days into their investigation, and Gallagher said they are still trying to learn the "why" of the May 31 shooting.
As far as the "how," police said the shooter legally bought five guns and a supressor in 2016 and 2017. He ordered body armor, a vest, in April 2019, but it did not arrive until May 31.
Police released a full timeline of the shooter's final day.
The final report from the Virginia Beach Police Department and the FBI is still six to nine months away.
Jason Nixon, whose wife Katherine was one of 12 people killed by the shooter inside Building 2, said he hoped the update will help with the healing process.
"Emotionally, this whole thing going forward, I hope it's going to give me some answers that I'm looking for," Nixon said.
Earlier in the day Tuesday, Nixon and relatives of all the victims had a chance to go inside Building 2.
- RELATED: Human Rights Commission meets with families of some victims of the Virginia Beach Municipal Center shooting
- RELATED: Virginia Beach mayor spoke about city manager's resignation
- RELATED: Mass shooting investigation in Virginia Beach reviewing 'toxic environment' claims among other things
- RELATED: Virginia Beach group voices concerns about independent investigation
- RELATED: Virginia Beach city council to discuss mass shooting survey results
- RELATED: Hundreds attend active shooter training workshop in Virginia Beach