The suspect in Sunday's shooting at a video game tournament in Jacksonville had been hospitalized twice for mental illness and played video games obsessively as a child, according to an Associated Press report.
Software publisher Electronic Arts has canceled the remaining three qualifying events for its Madden Classic esports tournament following the deaths of two competitors at the tournament's opening event held Sunday in Jacksonville.
Sheriff Mike Williams said a total of 12 people were shot, including two who were killed.
A witness told Fox News that the shooter "was a gamer, for sure", and said there were "multiple guys who were upset" at being knocked out of the competition, a regional qualifying tournament for the national Madden NFL Championship.
The shooting in Jacksonville is especially shocking for how it strips the innocence and sense of safety from such an event.
Instead the 24-year-old was eliminated, according to witnesses, who say he later returned with a handgun and opened fire.
"@SirusTheVirusTV and @fitzmagic13 dad are heroes", said pro "Madden" player Jokeeee.
"He made a good living gaming and he saved his earnings so he can afford to go to college to continue his education".
"One of my personal friends Larry, he's a 2K League player, he was also there he got shot three times", said Almashni, talking about the eSports NBA league. "Please take time to support each other through this challenging time", added Wilson.
"I'm just grateful to be alive", he said.
'Every hour that ticks by there are more people calling us, ' he said.
"The closeness of this tragedy shatters any sense of safety created by the distance of other shootings", First Baptist senior pastor Dr. Heath Lambert said of the recent bloodshed.
Experts say the gunman's history of mental illness apparently would not have stopped him from buying guns in Maryland, where buyers can not pass a background check if they were either involuntarily committed for any period of time or voluntarily admitted to a psychiatric facility for at least 30 consecutive days.