The teen who fatally shot two people at a Maryland shopping mall in January had spent months searching the Internet on mass murder, focusing on the massacre at Columbine, learning how to assemble and fire a shotgun, and how to build a bomb, says the Washington Post. At the same time, Darion Marcus Aguilar sought out clues to mental illness and joined a chat room filled with people contemplating suicide in their search for a way out. Before the shooting, he wrote a note, “I had to do this. Today is the day. On previous days I tried this I woke up with anxiety, regret and hope for a better future this day I didn't, I woke up felt no emotions no empathy no sympathy. I will have freedom or maybe not. I could care less.”
A moment later, Aguilar stepped out of the dressing room at store he had visited before and is popular with the skate and snowboarding sets, and randomly killed two clerks before firing on other mall patrons, wounding one and sending hundreds of panicked shoppers and merchants racing for cover. Then he took his own life. “He knew he was sick,” Howard County, Md., Police Chief William McMahon said yesterday, detailing findings of a six-week investigation of the fateful day, when Aguilar left home at 5:15 a.m., took a bus to the end of the line and then used a taxi to get to the mall. He carried a backpack hiding the disassembled shotgun and two makeshift bombs cobbled together with fireworks. “Nobody saw this coming,” the police chief said.