Pentagon ‘Truther’ Gunman Dies After Shootout, Two Officers Injured
March 5, 2010
(ChattahBox)—A California man calmly walked up to two police officers guarding an entrance to the Pentagon Thursday evening and opened fire with a 9-millimeter semi-automatic weapon. The man who has been identified as John Patrick Bedell, 36, was shot in the head by the officers manning a Pentagon security checkpoint at the busy Pentagon Metrorail station and transit center near the end of rush hour. The police officers were superficially injured, one was shot in the thigh and the other shot in the shoulder. Bedell, who had, until recently, been studying electrical engineering at the graduate level at San Jose State University, died hours later at George Washington University Hospital. The two officers were treated and released. Bedell appears to have acted alone and is not a member of a terrorist group, according to Pentagon officials. Bedell’s motives are not known at this time, but various postings on the Internet by Bedell, as J. Patrick Bedell point to resentment of the military and a belief in the 9/11 truther conspiracy.
The shooting occurred at 6:40 p.m, and as Bedell approached the two armed officers, he reached into his pocket as if to remove a pass to enter the building, but instead he pulled out a gun and opened fire. A witness told police that Bedell “walked up very cool” and displayed “no real emotion on his face.” Bedell was wearing a business suit and was seen speaking to a man on the surveillance video hours before the shooting. Police are searching for the man, but they don’t believe he is connected to the shooting.
Pentagon police chief Richard S. Keevill held a news conference early Friday morning and told reporters that the gunman carried two 9-millimeter semi-automatic weapons and “many magazines” of ammunition. “He walked very directly to the officers and engaged,” Keevill said. The police chief noted that there was no evidence that Bedell was linked to a terrorist group. “At this time it appears to be a single individual that had issues,” Keevill said. Authorities are investigating his anti-government Internet postings to aid in determining a motive for the shooting.
“The officers acted very quickly and decisively to neutralize him as a threat,” Keevill said. “No one else was injured.” The entire incident lasted less than a minute, with no pedestrian injuries or casualties. “We’re lucky, we’re very fortunate that there were not more civilians” at the entrance at the time of the shooting, Keevill said.
“There wasn’t time to say anything to him,” Keevill said. “He drew a gun and started shooting almost immediately.”
After the shooting last night, the Internet and Twitter postings were abuzz with details of J. Patrick Bedell’s online life. He was a frequent contributor to various Wikipedia sites, as JPatrickBedell and posted the documents of his 2006 arrest for growing marijuana plants in his home. He was obsessed with the death of Marine Col. James Sabow, who was found dead in the backyard of his California home in 1991. The death was ruled a suicide but the case has long been the source of theories of a cover-up.
In one posting JPatrickBedell wrote that he was “determined to see that justice is served” in the Sabow case. He also wrote that the Sabow case was “a step toward establishing the truth of events such as the September 11 demolitions.” His Wiki and Facebook pages have since been scrubbed by authorities, but his postings have been saved by this writer and others. Bedell also posted an audio tape, with a lengthy anti-government rant on freedom.
Below is one of his postings ranting about the Sabow case and his belief in cannabis rights:
“I am determined to see that justice is served in the death of Colonel James Sabow, as a step toward establishing the truth of events such as the September 11 demolitions and institutions such as the coup regime of 1963 that maintains itself in power through the global drug trade, financial corruption, and murder, among other crimes. My work to develop information currency is an effort to create a framework for information management that uses financial markets to create the economic signals (prices) that will effect complex human actions in the real world based on specified information. My desire for justice led me to violate what I think is one of the most unjust laws, cannabis prohibition, by growing 16 cannabis plants on my balcony in Irvine, CA from March 2006 to June 2006. I’ve posted the Orange County, CA District Attorney’s complaint for this offense.”
According to the Washington Post, “A man who identified himself as John Bedell answered a call placed to a Hollister, Calif., home and said he had a 36-year-old son named John Patrick Bedell “who is in the Washington area.” The elder Bedell then said, “I’m sorry, I can’t talk about this,” and hung up.” Police officials say Bedell lived with his parents.
Assistant White House press secretary Nicholas Shapiro, said President Obama was following the case and was being provided updates from the FBI.
More to come on the Internet postings of the shooter John Patrick Bedell.
Source: Washington Post
Photo Source: AP Photo/WJLA-TV