Authorities have identified Wade Michael Page as the suspected killer of six at yesterday’s Sikh Temple of Wisconsin shooting. He was a 40-year-old veteran of the U.S. Army who used a 9mm semi-automatic pistol at the temple.
In a news conference Sunday, officials said the suspect was killed after a gunfight with police officers. One officer, a 20-year veteran of the force, was shot at least eight times in the face and is still in critical condition. There were some reports that the shooter had a 9/11 tattoo on his arm, leading many to speculate he was a white supremacist. Police later said they were treating the incident as “domestic terrorism.”
According to NPR, Page enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1992 and was discharged in 1998. He was a Hawk missile repairman, then a psychological operations specialist. He served at Fort Bliss in Texas and Fort Bragg in North Carolina.
According to Texas court records, Page was born in Colorado and also used the last name Pierson. He was arrested in 1994 for causing criminal damage to property between $20 and $200 — a class B misdemeanor. He pled guilty.
Page is believed to be the lead singer of skinhead band End Apathy, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center. In this interview with the band, a man named Wade references place that he’s lived, including North Carolina and Colorado. Here’s what he said about the band’s origin:
End Apathy began in 2005 and the concept was based on trying to figure out what it would take to actually accomplish positive results in society and what is holding us back. A lot of what I realized at the time was that if we could figure out how to end peoples apathetic ways it would be the start towards moving forward. Of course after that it requires discipline, strict discipline to stay the course in our sick society. So, in a sense it was view of psychology and sociology. But I didn’t want to just point the finger at what other people should do, but also I was willing to point out some of my faults on how I was holding myself back.
Authorities said he recently moved to the southeastern Wisconsin area. His landlord’s mother told Greendale Patch that Page had recently broken up with his girlfriend. Sunday evening, authorities raided a house believed to belong to Page in Cudahy, Wis. The block was cleared, and neighbors were told to leave their homes and bring their pets. They were later allowed to return.
Police officials will hold a press conference this morning at 10 a.m. local time. They’re expected to release more information about Page.
Via the End Apathy MySpace.
Police outside the Wisconsin house believed to belong to Page.