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Thursday, April 3, 2014

Fort Hood shooter Ivan Lopez had mental health problems -- By Yamiche Alcindor, USA Today, Photo Palema Geller, The Blaze


846769128Shooter identified: Spc. Ivan Lopez, 1st Battalion, Warrior Transition Brigade, ties a fly during an instructional class Nov. 3 at Fort Hood. H/T PAMELA GELLER



The man behind Wednesday's deadly shooting at Fort Hood had mental health issues and was being treated for depression and anxiety before he killed three people and wounded 16 others.

Hours after the shooter opened fire, U.S. Rep. Michael McCaul of Texas identified the suspected gunman as Spc. Ivan Lopez. However, officials did not say what might have motivated him to kill fellow soldiers and then himself.

"We do know that this soldier had behavioral health and mental health issues and was being treated for that," said Lt. Gen. Mark Milley, head of the Army's III Corps at the Texas post.

Lopez was being evaluated for post-traumatic stress disorder, but had not yet been diagnosed for the illness.

Milley said Army officials were waiting to notify the man's family of his death before they released his name.

In addition to being examined for signs of PTSD, the soldier was undergoing treatment for depression, anxiety and a "variety" of other issues, Milley said.

Lopez, who was on medication, served four months in Iraq in 2011 and had "self-diagnosed" a traumatic brain injury. "He was not wounded in action," Milley said.

Lopez arrived at the installation in February from another Army post and had not been assigned to one of the Army Wounded Transition Units, military units that are set up to care for wounded, injured or ill soldiers. Those assigned to these units have case managers who help them track appointments and manage their medical treatments.

Investigators are checking into whether Lopez had a criminal history, trying to learn more about the state of his mental health and his experiences in combat. There was no evidence that the shooting was terrorism related but nothing is being ruled out, Milley said.

"All the things that you would expect us to be doing are being done right now," he added late Wednesday.

The soldier, who was armed with a .45-caliber Smith & Wesson handgun, was married and "does have family," Milley said. The family lives in the Fort Hood area, he said.

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