Officers in Sagadahoc County, Maine, attempted to conduct multiple wellness checks on mass shooter Robert Card in September, an officer report released by the county sheriff’s department showed.
The U.S. Army Reserve, incorrectly named as the U.S. Guard in the document, asked the Sagadahoc County Sheriff’s Department to complete a wellness check on Card after one of his friends alerted their commanding officer that he was concerned Card would “snap and commit a mass shooting,” according to the incident report. An officer attempted to contact Card at his main residence on Sept. 15 and 16, but was only able to make contact with Card’s brother, Ryan, who promised he would confiscate Card’s weapons and “use his judgment” to determine if Card needed “an evaluation.”
“I explained to Capt. Reamer that I tried to make contact with Card and he would not answer the door,” Aaron Skofield, the officer who attempted to perform the wellness check on Card, wrote in the report. “Capt. Reamer advised this is something that Card has done in the past. After he keeps to himself for a while he will come back out. . . He thought it best to let Card have time to himself for a bit.”
Card’s ex-wife also submitted a statement to officers in May and expressed concern that Card might be a danger to himself or others, according to an incident report. She claimed that Card had obtained 10 to 15 guns in his trailer, had been hearing voices, was extremely paranoid, always answered his front door while holding a gun and was experiencing a “deteriorating mental health condition.”
The Army Reserve said it had removed Card’s access to weapons at the base and was preparing to ask Card to retire from the armed service and seek professional help, according to the officer report from September. Card’s father and brother told officers that they had removed all of Card’s weapons and were storing them in a safe on the family’s property, and officers decided “forcing a contact with Card” would not be wise.
The sheriff’s department issued an alert on Sept. 15 to officers throughout the county warning them to be cautious when interacting with Card because of his mental health problems, but canceled the alert on Oct. 18. One week later, Card murdered 18 people and injured an additional 13 at a bowling alley and a bar in Lewiston, Maine, before taking his own life.
“We believe that our agency acted appropriately and followed procedures for conducting an attempt to locate and wellness check,” Sheriff Joel Merry said in a statement.
Merry and the Army Reserve did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s requests for comment.