Aaron Alexis, the Navy veteran who gunned down 12 people at a Washington military facility, had his federal security clearance renewed just two months before his rampage, despite a disturbing history of psychological problems and violent behavior involving guns.
Although Alexis was not a direct employee of the federal government, working as an IT subcontractor required that he obtain “secret” clearance, according to Thomas Hoshko, of The Experts, a Hewlett Packard subcontractor working at the Washington Navy Yards. Alexis had previously worked for the company under clearance, but when he returned in July, another background check was conducted, Hoshko said.
"We had just recently re-hired him,” Hoshko told Reuters. “Another background investigation was re-run and cleared through the defense security service in July 2013."
Alexis, 34, went on a shooting spree early Monday at the Naval Sea Systems Command headquarters in southeast Washington, killinng 12 and injuring eight before being killed by police. No motive had emerged as of Tuesday morning as to why he went on a rampage in the very complex where he worked.
It is not clear what that second background check consisted of, but just weeks earlier, Alexis’ roommate in Fort Worth filed a criminal complaint with the police after becoming suspicious that Alexis had tampered with his car’s fuel tank.
According to a criminal mischief complaint filed on July 5, Alexis’s roommate told Fort Worth police that his “roommate put unknown substance in gas tank to damage vehicle.”