Mass shooting at Computer Game centre leaves 2 dead in Florida
A GAMER shot dead two rivals before turning the gun on himself at a video game competition as it was streamed live on the internet in Florida.
David Katz opened fire on fellow contestants in Jacksonville on Sunday after he apparently lost the competition.
His victims have been named by friends online as married dad Taylor ‘SpotMePlzzz’ Robertson, 27, and 22-year-old Eli ‘Trueboy’ Clayton, a rising star of gaming.
Police have not confirmed the identities of those killed but the chilling moment a laser landed on Clayton’s chest before shots rang out was captured on the live stream.
Katz, 24, from Baltimore, Maryland, is said to have used at least one handgun to carry out the horrific attack, which also left 11 others injured, police said.
Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams said officers were called to the Chicago Pizza restaurant at the Jacksonville Landing entertainment complex at 1.34pm local time.
Shocking audio of the moment the massacre began – in which at least 12 shots rang out – was broadcast to gamers worldwide on live-stream software Twitch.
In the recording, two players can be seen sitting in chairs looking at a screen, chatting and joking, before shots ring out and the screen suddenly goes blank.
THE FACTS SO FAR
- David Katz opened fire on fellow contestants at the Madden NFL 2019 Tournament in Jacksonville on Sunday
- Katz killed two rival gamers and 11 others injured before turning the gun on himself
- Taylor Robertson, 27, and Eli Clayton, 22, have been named by friends and family as those killed
- Shocking audio of the moment the massacre began was broadcast to gamers worldwide
- Katz was said to have been acting “weird” at the tournament and wore the same clothes two days running
- Drini Gjoka – who won the tournament last year – was among the injured
Witnesses say Katz, who reportedly used the gamer monikers “Ravenschamp” and “Bread”, may have used a laser to assist his aim.
The clip from the live-stream shows a red dot appear on the chest of one of the players seconds before the gunfire began and screams of “oh my god” and “where did he go?” could be heard.
Steven “Steveyj” Javaruski, who was competing in the event, told the LA Times the shooter “targeted a few people” and shot “at least five victims before killing himself”.
Another witness told FOX NEWS that the gunman had just lost the competition and “went crazy and started shooting up the room.”
Katz was said to have been acting “weird” at the tournament and wore the same clothes two days running.
The gamer told ActionNewsJax that he beat Katz on Saturday in the pool round but when he tried to shake his hand Katz just stared blankly.
Javarius Long, told the Tampa Bay Times that the shooter was “nerdy” and court records in his parents’ divorce are said to show he had ‘significant health problems’ as a child.
Chillingly Katz was described as “not here to make friends” by an announcer at a previous tournament.
They added: “He’s all business, he’s focused, and to even get him to open up to talk to you about anything – it’s like pulling teeth, man.”
One gamer said: “He had shades on, he didn’t speak to anybody. Even after we played…I went to shake his hand and just tell him good game and he just looked at me. He didn’t say anything.”
Police, who are being assisted by the FBI, say Katz is believed to have stayed somewhere local to the tournament last night, possibly a hotel, but the search is ongoing.
Officers have managed to locate a car belonging to Katz and have raided a house in the upscale Federal Hill neighbourhood of South Baltimore, Maryland.
A tweet shared by the Buffalo Bills American football team in February last year shows Katz posing with a “Madden Champ” shirt after winning a different tournament in 2017.
Mr Williams confirmed that of the 11 injured, nine of those suffered gunshot wounds and two were hurt while trying to flee the bullets.
Drini Gjoka, who won the Madden NFL tournament last year, was among the injured and confirmed he had wounded his thumb.
He tweeted: “Worst day of my life. I will never take anything for granted ever again. Life can be cut short in a second.”
His representative, Jason Lake, said: “We’re obviously shocked and saddened by this afternoon’s events.
“Our player, Drini, was hit in the thumb but is going to be fine.
“He managed to escape and run down the street to a nearby gym