Arizona Shootings Suspect, Neo-Nazi, Found Dead Among 5 Bodies
Arizona shootings that left five people dead Wednesday could have been caused by Jason Todd Ready, an admitted Neo-Nazi white supremacist and leader of a local militia.
The shootings took place in Gilbert, Arizona, where Ready, an ex-Marine and leader of an anti-illegal immigration group, the Minuteman Project, is suspected of killing four others and himself. The bodies of Lisa Mederos, his 47-year-old girlfriend, Amber Mederos, her 23-year-old daughter, Jim, "Jambob" Hiott, Amber's 24-year-old boyfriend and an Afghanistan Army veteran, and Lily, Amber's 16-month-old daughter were found in their home.
"This is a domestic situation," Sgt. Bill Balafas, a Gilbert police spokesman, told The Arizona Republic.
Authorities are currently interviewing Brittany Mederos, the other daughter of Lisa Mederos. She wasn't present at the time of the shooting, but thankfully unharmed.
"She was in the bedroom when she heard the gunshots," Hugo Mederos, Lisa's ex-husband, told MSNBC. "She heard everybody screaming. She heard the baby crying."
Right before the shooting, an operator said that Mederos called 911 because of domestic violence reasons. During the phone call, the operator heard gunshots, and the line went dead.
This isn't the first allegation of domestic violence that was leveled at J.T. Ready; in February, Lisa Mederos called 911 to report that Ready had choked her six months prior, according to the Associated Press. No charges were filed, possibly because she waited so long to report the incident.
Amber and her fiancée reportedly moved out of the GIlbert home because Ready was "cruel and controlling," a former co-worker of Lisa's, Heather Morton, told The Republic.
Some allege that J.T. Ready was not capable of the violence that took place in Arizona Wednesday, however.
"I'm not going to speculate or make any conclusions. I'm going to let the investigation take its course," Harry Hughes, a regional director for the National Socialist Movement- a white supremacist group- told AP. "I have a real hard time believing that J.T. Ready could actually shoot and kill a child."
Ready's ex-wife, Arline Lindgren, was married to the militia leader in the late 1990s. Her brother, Adam Lindgren, said that the 39-year-old Neo-Nazi had a temper, but "not a violent temper, that I was aware of."
Police found at the murder scene two handguns and a shotgun.
Neighbors were outraged by the violence, which occurred in what is normally a quiet suburb of Gilbert.
"You want to commit suicide? How dare you take children's lives," said Cathi Rand, a nearby resident.
It seems Ready could have become more violent after his multiple failed attempts to become a politician, and a long shot run for sheriff of Pinal County.
"At some point in his life, darkness took over," said former Arizona Rep. Russell Pearce, who distanced himself as Ready's white supremacist views became public.