Nashville police: Shooter bought 7 guns, had emotional disorder

Police said the shooter purchased the guns at five different Nashville-area gun shops and hid them from their parents.

Authorities investigate a home possibly connected to the school shooting.
John Bazemore/AP

Metro Nashville Police Chief John Drake revealed that the shooter in Monday’s school shooting legally purchased seven guns prior to the massacre. 

He stated that Audrey Hale, 28, had three guns on hand, using those weapons to kill three adults and three students at The Covenant School in Nashville. 

Drake said Hale was able to purchase the weapons despite being treated for an emotional disorder. Drake said law enforcement had no prior knowledge of Hale’s emotional disorder.

A former teammate of Hale's told Scripps News Nashville that she had received several suicidal messages from Hale before Monday's shooting.

“If it had been reported, there's not a law for that,” Drake said. “But had it been reported that she was suicidal or she was going to kill someone and have been made known to us, then we would have tried to get those weapons. But as it stands, we had no actual idea who this person was.”

Tennessee's Gov. Bill Lee said in a recorded message on Tuesday night, "Everyone is hurting, everyone."

Lee said, "Remembering that as we grieve and walk together, will be the way we honor those who were lost."

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Drake indicated that Hale hid the weapons from their parents, and Hale’s parents were under the impression Hale had sold one weapon. 

The students and staff killed were not targeted, Drake indicated. 

Drake said that Hale had a manifesto that included other locations, a map of the school and drawings of how to enter.

Earlier on Tuesday, police released footage from two officers’ body cameras. The footage showed officers entering the building within minutes of arriving. 

Drake said that the first call of an active shooter was received at 10:13 a.m. The chief said it took 11 minutes from the time the call was received until officers shot Hale. Drake indicated that Hale struck several police cars with gunfire. 

“I was really impressed that with all that was going on, the danger, that somebody took control and said, let's go, let's go, let's go and went and took care of it just try to end this,” Drake said.