The Associated Press reported on Monday that federal agents are reviewing the social media accounts of the gunman who killed eight at a Dallas-area shopping mall to determine whether he expressed an interest in white supremacy. However, the official cautioned that the investigation is still in the early stages.
A law enforcement official who spoke anonymously to the Associated Press said social media accounts believed to belong to 33-year-old Mauricio Garcia included posts expressing an interest in neo-Nazi and white supremacist views.
Garcia was also wearing a patch on his chest at the time of the shooting that featured “RWDS,” which stands for “Right Wing Death Squad,” the official told the AP.
NBC News reported that the FBI, ATF, and Texas Rangers are investigating whether the shooting was a case of ethnically or racially motivated violent extremism.
Law enforcement officials who spoke to NBC News also pointed out that the social media posts attributed to Garcia were not “liked” or “shared” by other users.
Federal agents are also interviewing Garcia’s family members and associates to find out what his beliefs were. They are reviewing his financial records as well as other online or electronic media posts they believe were made by Garcia, the Associated Press reported.
However, Allen Police Chief Brian Harvey refused to answer the AP’s questions on the investigation, saying, “We actually don’t have a lot.”
Unsurprisingly, conservative media outlets and social media users are questioning the supposition that a Hispanic would embrace white supremacy, with many wondering if the social media accounts attributed to Garcia are authentic.
In a tweet on Tuesday, Tesla CEO Elon Musk suggested that the claims that the shooter was a white supremacist sounded like a “very bad psyop.”
According to the official who spoke to the Associated Press, investigators searched the Dallas motel where Garcia was staying. They also searched a home in Dallas that is connected to Garcia.