AUBURN, Maine – As the year comes to a close, lingering questions remain about the deadliest mass shooting in Maine’s history, which occurred in Lewiston in October. Concerns about the mental state of the shooter, Robert R. Card II, had been raised by the US Army Reserve to a Maine sheriff in September, warning that Card was at risk of carrying out a mass shooting due to severe mental illness.
Families and lawmakers are seeking answers as to why law enforcement did not intervene despite being aware of the warning signs. Additionally, questions are being raised about why the state’s “yellow flag” law, aimed at restricting access to weapons for individuals at risk of harming themselves or others, was not invoked.
An independent commission appointed by Maine Governor Janet T. Mills is currently investigating the events leading up to the mass shooting, as well as the response of authorities once warnings about the gunman’s mental health were brought to their attention.
The commission, funded by the state attorney general’s office, is expected to release a report to the public once its investigation is concluded. However, a meeting scheduled for December was postponed, as members await crucial information from the state.
Meanwhile, members of Maine’s congressional delegation have called for a federal investigation into the shooting, citing red flags that were raised about the gunman prior to the tragedy. Additionally, brain tissue from Card has been sent to Boston University’s CTE Center for testing, as there are concerns about the presence of chronic traumatic encephalopathy due to his military background.
Despite ongoing investigations and requests for additional records that may shed light on the events leading up to the shooting, many questions remain unanswered as Maine prepares to enter the new year. The findings of the state commission and any further developments in the federal and CTE investigations are eagerly awaited by those seeking closure and a deeper understanding of the tragic events that unfolded in Lewiston.