Jim D. Adkisson wanted to fight a gay-inclusive church’s “liberal movement” when he shot-up Sunday services this weekend, said police. Fifty-eight year old Adkisson allegedly killed two and injured seven at about 10:18 on yesterday morning and a letter found in his car later specified his murderous “reasoning:”
The shotgun-wielding suspect in Sunday’s mass shooting at the Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church was motivated by a hatred of “the liberal movement,” and he planned to shoot until police shot him, Knoxville Police Chief Sterling P. Owen IV said this morning.
[Adkisson] of Powell wrote a four-page letter in which he stated his “hatred of the liberal movement,” Owen said. “Liberals in general, as well as gays.”
The four-page letter indicates that Adkisson. had been planning the attack for about a week.
Witnesses say Adkisson watched into the church’s sanctuary room, where about 200 people were gathered to watch the children’s movie Annie Jr, and began shooting into the adult-packed pews. Seven people remain critically injured, while brothers Jack and Joe Barnhart were killed at the scene.
Police found 76 shot gun shells inside the church. He used a guitar case to hide the weapon. He carried ammunition in a fanny pack. Chief Owens remarked, “”He certainly intended to take a lot of casualties.” Worshipers took down Adkisson as he reloaded.