According to the Associated Press, the FBI views Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez, the Muslim terrorist who murdered five servicemen in Chattanooga at two military sites, as a “homegrown violent extremist” and will not assert that he was radicalized by others.
Ed Reinhold, the FBI’s special agent in charge in Knoxville, told reporters Wednesday that the FBI believes Abdulazeez acted alone. The FBI stated that two weapons recovered at the scene of the attack belonged to service members, not the murderer, who had three guns.
Reinhold said one service member shot at Abdulazeez after he ran his Mustang through the gates of the military facility. He added that preliminary reports indicated the four Marines and one sailor killed were shot by the same gun and were not hit by friendly fire.
Reinhold said Abdulazeez entered, shot a service member, wandered through the building shooting others, then exited out the back, shooting two more service members before Chattanooga police opened fire, killing him.
Maj. Gen. Paul W. Brier, commanding general of the 4th Marine Division, said 20 Marines and two Navy corpsman inspecting equipment ran through the building to rescue other service members from the attack. He said the troops “reacted the way you would expect.” He also stated that once the rescuers brought others to safety, some of them returned to the building to join in counterattack against the gunman.