December 8, 2023

Native Information

The conclusion was introduced per week after his physique was found at the back of a tractor-trailer on the property of his former employer at a recycling heart.

A member of regulation enforcement walks with a police canine exterior a property on Meadow Street in Bowdoin, Maine, Thursday, Oct. 26, 2023. Tons of of closely armed police and FBI brokers searched intensely for Robert Card, an Military reservist authorities say fatally shot numerous individuals at a bowling alley and a bar Wednesday. (AP Picture/Steven Senne) AP

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — The Military reservist who opened hearth inside at a bowling alley and a bar in Lewiston, Maine, earlier than disappearing was alive and probably on the run throughout a great portion of the huge search that adopted, based on a conclusion from the state medical expert’s workplace launched Friday.

Robert Card died from a self-inflicted gunshot that “probably” occurred eight to 12 hours earlier than the invention of his physique, primarily based on a time-of-death evaluation, officers stated. The conclusion was introduced per week after his physique was found at the back of a tractor-trailer on the property of his former employer at a recycling heart.

Within the wake of the Oct. 25 shootings, which killed 18 individuals and wounded 13 extra, tens of 1000’s of space residents sheltered at dwelling behind locked doorways as tons of of regulation enforcement officers scoured the realm on the lookout for Card. He fled in a automobile that was later discovered deserted on a waterfront in a close-by city.

Legislation enforcement businesses got here beneath scrutiny for not discovering Card’s physique earlier beneath the belief that he killed himself within the hours simply after the shootings and that his physique was ignored in earlier searches.

However the time of dying offered by the state’s chief medical expert, Dr. Mark Flomenbaum, suggests Card, 40, was alive and probably on the transfer for greater than 24 hours after the killings.

The medical expert’s workplace, nevertheless, stated Card suffered from a situation during which his coronary heart emptied of blood after the gunshot wound, affecting the way in which the blood settled in his physique and probably making the time of dying much less sure, based on Lindsey Chasteen, workplace administrator of medical expert’s workplace in Augusta.

A state police spokesperson had no remark Friday.

The newest disclosure within the investigation got here on the identical day President Joe Biden and first girl Jill Biden visited Lewiston to pay their respects and meet with victims. “Jill and I’ve accomplished too many of those,” Biden stated exterior the bowling alley the place Card first opened hearth. The opposite website was a close-by bar.

Card had been recognized to regulation enforcement for months as relations and others turned more and more anxious about his psychological state.

Concern accelerated following an altercation he had with fellow Military Reserve members. Card and different members of the Military Reserve’s third Battalion, 304th Infantry Unit have been in New York for coaching July 15 when he accused a number of of them of calling him a pedophile, shoved one in every of them and locked himself in his motel room. Issues over his psychological well being led to a 14-day hospitalization on the 4 Winds Psychiatric Hospital in Katonah, New York.

The concerns continued when Card returned to Maine. One in all Card’s fellow reservists urged a superior to vary the passcode to the gate and have a gun if Card arrived on the Military Reserve drill heart in Saco, Maine.

“I consider he’s going to snap and do a mass taking pictures,” the reservist wrote in a textual content.

A deputy twice visited Card’s home in Bowdoin, calling for backup on the second go to, however Card didn’t come to the door. Beneath Maine’s “ yellow flag ” regulation, officers have discretion to hunt to place somebody in short-term protecting custody and start the method of eradicating the individual’s entry to weapons.

That by no means occurred. A sheriff stated the deputies who visited Card for a wellness examine didn’t have authorized authority to interrupt down the door and take Card.

What occurred after the deputies’ go to stays unclear. The sheriff’s workplace canceled its statewide alert searching for assist finding Card per week earlier than the killings.