Daylife/AP Photo used by permission
Little Rock, Arkansas… A 23-year-old man upset about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan opened fire from his truck at two soldiers standing outside a military recruiting station here on Monday morning, killing one private and wounding another, the police said.
The gunman, identified by the police as Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammad of Little Rock, fled the scene and was arrested minutes later a short distance from the recruiting station, in a bustling suburban shopping center. The police confiscated a Russian-made SKS semiautomatic rifle, a .22-caliber rifle and a handgun from his black pickup truck.
The two privates, who were both from Arkansas, were in Little Rock as part of a recruiting program that typically uses soldiers recently out of basic training to promote the Army in their home regions, Army officials said.
“They were serving their country,” said Lt. Col. Thomas F. Artis, commander of the Oklahoma City recruiting battalion, which includes Arkansas. “They were just standing outside, just taking a five-minute break, just minding their own business — and this happens.”
The dead soldier was identified as Pvt. William A. Long, 23, of Conway, about 30 miles north of Little Rock. The other victim, Pvt. Quinton Ezeagwula, 18, was in stable condition at Baptist Medical Center, Chief Stuart Thomas of the Little Rock Police Department said.
In a lengthy interview with the police, Mr. Muhammad said he was angry about the killing of Muslims in Iraq and Afghanistan, Chief Thomas said. Previously known as Carlos Bledsoe, Mr. Muhammad told investigators that he had converted to Islam as a teenager, Chief Thomas said…
“I would say he was looking for any and all targets of opportunity that happened to be military,” the chief said in a telephone interview. “That may have well been the first place he found.”
Idiot. Profoundly ignorant, thoughtless fanatic. He defames his religion.
His defiance of the laws of the land deserves a life in prison. His murder of another young man guilty only of serving his country – is beyond defense.