5 Things we know about suspected Maryland warehouse shooter Snochia Moseley
Authorities are just beginning to unravel the details behind what may have driven a Maryland woman to open fire at her workplace, killing three people before she turned the gun on herself
Employees at a Maryland drugstore warehouse endured horrifying moments of gunfire and terror as a woman working a temp job fired on colleagues with a handgun, killing three people before fatally shooting herself.
As authorities in Harford County are still trying to determine why Snochia Moseley opened fire at the Rite Aid warehouse details have started to trickle in about the troubled young woman.
Below, is what we’ve been able to find out so far.
The attack seemingly came out of nowhere
According to the Associated Press, Rite Aid worker Walter Zambrano, 64, said he was fortunate that he was in a bathroom when shooting broke out during a 9 a.m. morning break when workers were gathering in a cafeteria.
The person was “shooting like crazy, bam! bam! bam!” Zambrano said, speaking in Spanish. “Everyone was screaming, running this way and that. I didn’t know which way to run.”
Harford County Sheriff Jeffrey Gahler told a news conference hours later that only one weapon was used — a .9 mm Glock handgun that was registered in Moseley’s name — and that unlike most disgruntled employee shootings, no one saw this attack coming.
“She had reported for her workday as usual, and around 9 a.m. the shooting began, striking victims both outside the business and inside the facility,” Gahler said, calling it a “senseless crime.”
Krystal Watson, says her husband Eric, who works at the facility told her told her the suspect had been arguing with somebody else near a time clock after a “town hall meeting.”
“And she went off,” she said.
“She didn’t have a particular target. She was just shooting,” Watson said as she left a fire station where relatives sought to be reunited with loved ones.
She may have been battling with mental illness
Troi Coley, a classmate of Moseley’s since high school, said they had stayed in frequent contact on Facebook Messenger and that Moseley sometimes admitted that she felt as if the world was against her.
In spite of her feelings of alienation, she never came off as a particularly angry person, so she was shocked to learn that her friend had been named as the person who carried out the shooting.
“She wasn’t a monster, wasn’t an angry person,” Coley said. “I just believe this was emotional distress. If she did this, it was her last straw.”
She was able to legally obtain a firearm despite her condition
Gahler said family and friends of told investigators she was “increasingly agitated” and that they were “concerned for her well-being.”
“I don’t want to go into specifics about her medical condition but she was diagnosed with a mental illness,” Gahler said.
Despite this, she was able to legally purchase her firearm. Police said she would need to be diagnosed with a mental illness or disorder and would have had to shown a propensity of violence to herself or others before applying to purchase a firearm in order to be denied a gun license.
“As we look across the country it is pervasive in a lot of communities. You just don’t know when or where this could happen. It’s almost like a ticking time bomb and when that mental illness manifests into violence,” Harford County Executive Barry Glassman said at the news conference.
The shooter identified as Transgender
While authorities and court records identified Moseley as female, as did a Facebook profile in her name, Coley says Moseley described herself as transgender.
Howevery, because it has still not been confirmed whether Moseley preferred to be addressed using masculine or feminine pronouns, reports continue to refer to the shooter as “she.”
Moseley even discussed beginning hormone treatment soon.
“I just started talking about [being transgender],” Moseley wrote in a message from December, 2016. “My sister is totally supportive, my brothers already had an idea, my mom I haven’t gotten around to admitting it to yet. but she’s heard about it somehow.”
Moseley was a shy, aspiring screenwriter
Another friend, who asked not to be identified said his first thought was with the victims. But once he realized who the killer was his feelings became considerably more complex.
“It’s catastrophic,” said the friend, who said he had known Moseley since elementary school. “She did a terrible thing, but I feel for her.
“The first thing you think is, ‘This person is horrible,’ because you have a bias. But knowing someone, I believe everyone is human. Everyone is going through something.”
Coley shared that Moseley, who was incredibly shy, expressed herself best through writing. She had written a manuscript and the pair had plans to turn Moseley’s experiences into a documentary film.
“I hate being in the spotlight whether it’s good or bad,” Moseley wrote in one message to her friend.