Wade Michael Page, the man who killed six Sikh worshippers at an Wisconsin temple Sunday before shooting himself in the head, was so mentally unstable after breaking up with a girlfriend that his Army friends had to break into his apartment to make sure he had not committed suicide, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports. They found Page passed out from alcohol on the floor in 1997, said Christopher Robillard, who served with Page in the Army’s elite psychological operations corps. Instead of reporting the incident to authorities, Robillard said he and his friends covered up for Page – a decision Robillard “deeply regrets.” “We thought at the time to keep it to ourselves, but I wish now that we would have reported it,” Robillard said.
The incident is one of what must have been dozens of missed signals over the years, said Jennifer Dunn, a psychiatric nurse who lived downstairs from Page. “If anyone had evaluated this man, a gazillion red flags would have gone off,” Dunn said. “It was obvious to me that he had huge mental illness.” Dunn never called police because, while she saw Page acting oddly, he did not do anything dangerous enough to warrant committing him. The suicide scare should have been enough to alert Army doctors that Page was unfit for duty, said John Liebert, a psychiatrist who does military fitness exams and has written a text on suicidal mass murderers. “Page had no business being in the military, especially in a sensitive job like psychological operations specialist,” he said. “Where was his commander? His commander certainly knew most, if not all of this, or his commander was incompetent.”