Knoxville Shooter’s Manifesto Found

Jim Burroway

July 28th, 2008

AdkissonKnoxville police say that they found a multi-page, handwritten letter in the car of Jim David Adkisson, the mass shooter at Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church Sunday morning. Police aren’t releasing the contents of the letter, which they say provides evidence of the shooter’s motives. A police department investigator has briefed Knox County Criminal Court Judge Kenneth Irvine Jr. on the letter.

The investigator also told Irvine that in a subsequent interview, Adkisson said he entered the church Sunday morning with the intent of killing everyone inside. He denied having specifically targeted any children. Witnesses report that he was saying “hateful words” as he fired. Witnesses and police so far are not commenting on a possible motive, but they say that Adkisson had no apparent connection with the church.

Some 200 people were in the sanctuary when the gunman opened fire. A children’s musical play had just begun at the start of Sunday services. Two people were killed and seven wounded. Greg McKendry, 60, was killed when he confronted Adkisson. Also killed was Linda Kraeger, 61, who was visiting to see the musical.

See also:
Knoxville Gays On Edge; Local MCC Church Wants To See Letter
Relief Fund Set Up for Knoxville Churches
Thoughts and Prayers for Knoxville Shooting Victims
Knoxville Shooting Witness’s First-Hand Account
Knoxville Shooter Hated “Blacks, Gays, Anyone Different”
AFA Approved Comments: Knoxville Church Doing “Satan’s Work”
Knoxville Shooter Hated “Liberals,” Gays
Just Concluded: Knoxville Press Conference
Knoxville Shooter’s Manifesto Found
Gunman Opens Fire On Gay-Friendly Church, Two Killed


July 28th, 2008

I watched the press conference and heard the shooter had a grudge against liberals. Why was this not mentioned in the CNN article or this blog post?

Jim Burroway

July 28th, 2008

When I wrote this before the press conference, the information wasn’t available. We covered this morning’s press conference here.


July 28th, 2008

This is so heartbreaking – I know people who attend this church.

The Rev. Don Prange

July 28th, 2008

There is a deep irony in the fact that TVUUC has just the kind of people who would not only understand the anger of the person who came to kill as many as he could, but would have been advocates for the kind of justice he felt he was being denied. Had he come saying, ‘I have a problem, can you help?’, he would have found caring people who would have addressed his situation in creative ways.

But as a pastor of an ‘open and affirming’ congregation (St. James United Church of Christ, Lovettsville, Va), we know and have experienced the kind of verbal hostility in the community that too creates an atmosphere that gives ‘permission’ for angry persons to act out their misdirected hatreds.

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