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Less than two weeks after the Dallas shootings that left five officers and a lone gunman dead, the city of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, grapples with a similar tragedy.

On Sunday, police identified Gavin Long as the shooter who killed three officers in an eight-minute standoff. Details emerge about the 29-year-old ex-Marine and what motivated him to take what he called justice into his own hands.

What we know:

  • Long hails from Kansas City, Missouri, and served as a Marine from August 2005 until August 2010, BBC News reports. He rose to sergeant and served in Iraq for half a year (June 2008 to January 2009), earning a number of medals and commendations. He was honorably discharged.
  • The New York Daily News reports Long was outraged about Alton Sterling‘s deadly police shooting that was captured on video. He called for the body cam footage of the officer’s involved to be released in an email obtained by the Daily News.
  • Online he went by the pseudonym known as “Cosmo Setepenra,” posting videos rallying for the unjust treatment of Black people in America.
  • In one tweet he wrote, “Violence is not THE answer (its a answer), but at what point do you stand up so that your people dont become the Native Americans…EXTINCT?”
  • He did not claim allegiance to any groups, but said, “I’m affiliated with the spirit of justice.”
  • According to BBC, Long travelled to Dallas shortly after the shootings, using a camera to document his trips to local barber shops, promoting his book and passing out documents to Dallas youth.

  • After the Dallas shootings, he returned to Kansas City, rented a car, and drove to Baton Rouge. The shooting took place on his birthday.
  • Authorities were called after concerned witnesses reported an armed man near the B-Quik convenience store on Airline Highway in Baton Rouge. Long opened fire around 9 a.m. ET.
  • He was reportedly masked, wearing armor and all black.
  • Baton Rouge Mayor Kip Holden called the shooting an “ambush.”
  • Three officers were killed in the midst of the attacks: Montrell Jackson, 32, Matthew Gerald, 41, and Sheriff’s Deputy Brad Garafola, 45.
  • President Obama spoke Sunday condemning the attacks saying, “We as a nation have to be loud and clear that nothing justifies violence against law enforcement. Attacks on police are an attack on all of us, and the rule of law that makes society possible.”
  • The Daily News reports a robot was used to search Long’s body for explosives after he was killed.

SOURCES: BBC NewsThe New York Daily News | PHOTO CREDIT: Getty, Twitter


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What We Know So Far About the Baton Rouge Shooter  was originally published on