On Friday, Pima County Sheriff's Department released a complete chronology of the series of events that took place before the Tucson massacre that left 6 dead and 13 injured including Rep. Gabrielle Giffords.
The chronology brings to light new aspects of the event that makes one dwell on the troubled life of suspect, Jared Loughner.
24 hours prior to the incident, the suspect spent some bizarre moments which involved checking into a motel in Tucson, purchasing ammunition and a diaper bag, getting caught by AZ Game & Fish Department officer for running a red light and posting a message titled Goodbye Friends on MySpace.
The very sequence of incidents indicates the state of mind that Loughner was in before the shootout. Merely connecting the event to political rhetoric is overlooking the prime reason that instigated a 22 year old to commit such a heinous crime. Records indicated that in the last couple of years, Loughner's behavior was becoming increasingly erratic.
Born on September 10, 1988 to Randy Loughner and Amy Loughner, Jared was just like any other ordinary young boy who attended Mountain View High School in Arizona.
However, it was in 2006 when he dropped out of school that behavioral problems started to surface. It was around this time that people started to notice a strange personality transformation in him. He started to remain aloof and would keep to himself even though he had friends in high school.
Within the time span February to September 2010; Loughner had around five contacts with Pima Community College police for classroom and library disruptions. On September 29, 2010, college police discovered a YouTube video shot by Loughner, in which his spoken commentary stated that the college was illegal according to the United States Constitution under the first amendment. He also said that all the teachers are paid illegally and that the college is one of the biggest scams in America.
For this act, the college authorities suspended him and told him that in order to come back to school, he needed to resolve his Code of Conduct violations and obtain a mental health clearance indicating, in the opinion of a mental health professional, that his presence did not constitute a danger to himself or others.
While within the community college classroom, Jared disturbed his classmates and authorities immensely. An e-mail by Loughner's algebra instructor, Ben McGahee, in June was forwarded to the New York Times which stated that We do have one student in the class who was disruptive today, I'm not certain yet if he was on drugs (as one person surmised) or disturbed. He scares me a bit. The mail refers to a classroom incident where Loughner gave an explosive response when posed with a simple arithmetic question.
Despite all the assumptions and interrogations, it is still unclear whether Loughner needs medical health care interventions. TIME magazine was quoted saying that many signs point to one of the psychotic disorders - delusional disorders, or schizophrenia, for which the average age of onset is roughly 20, about when Loughner started showing symptoms. At the same time, using mental illness as a mode of defense, suspect's legal team might also help him end up in a hospital for life rather than in prison.