A neighbor told the Associated Press that Cascade Mall shooter Arcan Cetin was so “creepy, rude, and obnoxious” that she kept a Taser near her front door, just in case he came calling.
The neighbor, 21-year-old Amber Cathey, said she blocked Cetin on Snapchat after he sent her a photo of his crotch. She found him so frightening that she would walk a longer route to her nearby apartment to avoid him, if she saw his car in the parking lot.
Another neighbor, a 19-year-old female classmate of Cetin’s who wished to remain anonymous, told the Seattle Times, “One time, he walked into my house uninvited. I got my brother to ask him to leave because I was too scared… He’s not a cool character. I didn’t like him.”
A high-school classmate of Cetin’s named Dakota Kinonen told CBS News he was “very hurtful toward girls.”
“He would sexually harass them, and bully a lot of them,” she said. Local news station KIRO adds Kinonen’s claim that Cetin once “grabbed her inappropriately in high school,” and says another young woman who wished to remain anonymous told a similar story of sexual harassment.
“In high school he started harassing kids and not being a nice person, so I disassociated with him. He would grope women in high school and middle school,” Austin Hendrix, who graduated from Oak Harbor High School with Cetin in 2015, told the Seattle Times.
The New York Times quoted another classmate, Uhlaine Finnigan, who called Cetin “sexist” and said he often slapped or grabbed girls on their buttocks.
“He did that to girls of all grades at the high school including my best friend and I, regardless of the blatant disgust from the girls and being told to stop,” Finnigan said.
Cetin also had a “string of run-ins with the law in recent years, including charges he assaulted his stepfather,” as well as a drunk driving arrest.
Due to his domestic violence case, a judge told him on December 29th that he should not possess a firearm. His stepfather, however, pleaded with the judge not to impose a no-contact order on Cetin, arguing that he would be unable to help his stepson deal with the “hard time” he was going through, if the two were forbidden to have contact.
CBS News reports that a formal no-contact order was nevertheless entered for both of Cetin’s parents, but KIRO says the judge granted a motion to cancel the no-contact order the next day.
“It’s clear from the court docket that Cetin was struggling with emotional or mental health issues, and that the court, prosecutors office and defense team were trying to get him help,” mused the Seattle Times.
“He was reportedly ordered to undergo a mental health evaluation in August 2015, and that was completed as of March 2016, KIRO reported. As of Aug. 25, 2016, Cetin was in compliance with weekly sessions for mental health counseling. He complied with the alcohol assessment, according to court records, and he had a deferred prosecution review for a case involving a marijuana scheduled for 2018,” CBS reports.
KIRO alludes to a second “misdemeanor fourth-degree assault case” in Island County concerning Cetin and a different alleged victim, but provided few details beyond noting that prosecution was deferred, on the condition Cetin avoid drugs and alcohol.
The search for a motive in Cetin’s deadly rampage often mentions his ex-girlfriend, who is said to have once worked at the Macy’s where he opened fire, but moved to a different area some time ago. The police have been working to establish whether he knew any of his five victims.
The Associated Press dug into Cetin’s social media accounts to look for clues:
A Twitter account showed, among other things, selfies, photos of him in younger years and pictures of Turkish food. He once participated in paintball and said he “can’t wait for Halo 5,” the first-person shooter video game. He also tweeted: “Shout out to the ROTC peeps.” A Facebook account showed he liked military-related sites.
Cetin also appeared to have blogs on the site Tumblr that had not been updated in many months. They included seemingly random posts about serial killer Ted Bundy, a collection of selfies, the top-secret Area 51 Cold War test site and photos of Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei and Islamic State group leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. The two blogs linked back to each other and one of them linked to what appeared to be his Twitter page.
The L.A. Times adds that in one Tumblr post, Cetin “urged readers to repeat the phrase ‘Subhan Allah’ (‘Glory to God’) 10 times, ‘and then reblog this, do not stop reblogging it.” The date of this Tumblr post is not mentioned in the article.