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Nashville shooter may have felt 'resentment' toward school, police chief says

Peter Sblendorio, New York Daily News on

Published in News & Features

Nashville shooter Audrey Hale may have felt “resentment” toward the school in Monday’s deadly rampage, the city’s police chief said Tuesday.

Officials say Hale, a former student at the Covenant School, killed three kids and three adults there before being fatally shot by police.

“There’s some belief that there was some resentment for having to go to that school,” Chief John Drake told NBC News.

Investigators have not released a motive for the shooting, but Drake said Monday that Hale, 28, left a manifesto and “some writings” pertaining to the attack. Evidence suggests Hale may have planned to target other locations as well, Drake told NBC.

“She targeted random students in the school ... whoever she came in contact with, she fired rounds,” Drake said.

The victims included three 9-year-old students and 60-year-old Katherine Koonce, the head of the private Christian school. Substitute teacher Cynthia Peak and custodian Mike Hill, both 61, were also killed in the attack.

Drake said investigators “feel that (Hale) identifies as trans, but we’re still in the initial investigation into all of that and if it actually played a role into this incident.”

The shooter brought two assault-style rifles and a handgun to the school, officials said. Police shot and killed Hale at 10:27 a.m., 14 minutes after receiving their first report of an active shooter.


On Tuesday, authorities released surveillance and body camera footage of the police response.

“This is our worst day, but it could have been worse without this brave response,” Nashville Mayor John Cooper told CNN. “So we’re very grateful for that.”

Hale referenced plans to commit suicide in alarming messages to a former middle school basketball teammate shortly before the shooting, the former classmate said.

“One day this will make more sense,” Hale wrote to Averianna Patton over Instagram, according to the Nashville news station WTVF. “I’ve left behind more than enough evidence. But something bad is about to happen.”

Patton told the TV outlet she reached out to the Suicide Prevention Help Line and law enforcement officials and learned Hale was the school shooter through an announcement by authorities.


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