The history of Esteban Santiago, the madman accused of killing five people at a Florida airport yesterday, reads like a jigsaw puzzle for disaster. Too bad no one ever put the pieces together.
Santiago-Ruiz arrived in Fort Lauderdale with a gun that he checked in his baggage, CBS News reported. After claiming the bag, he loaded it in a bathroom, returned to baggage claim and began shooting.
With a past history of violence, combat duty in Iraq, a less-than-honorable discharge from military service, allegations of child pornography, violation of a restraining order, an eviction, and a descent into psychosis that he actually admitted to the FBI only two months ago, someone should have been able to predict this tragedy.
Federal law enforcement officials confirmed that Santiago walked into an FBI office in Anchorage, Alaska, in November and claimed his mind was being controlled by the Central Intelligence Agency, NBC News reported. He claimed that the CIA was forcing him to watch Islamic State group videos.
CBS added that Santiago claimed he was being “forced to fight” for the terrorist organization.
The FBI contacted local law enforcement, who checked Santiago into a mental health facility, where he remained for at least two weeks.
Santiago grew up in Puerto Rico, where he served in the National Guard. He was deployed to Iraq for 10 months, transferred to the Army Reserves and later moved to Alaska, where he served in the Alaska National Guard as a combat engineer.
According to The Daily Beast, Santiago also had an open assault case for attempting to strangle his girlfriend in Jan. 2016 after breaking down the locked door of a bathroom in her home. Police found him there again a month later, in violation of a restraining order.
He was also evicted for non-payment of rent in Feb. 2015.
Santiago was discharged in August 2016 for unsatisfactory performance following several AWOL episodes and demotions, the Alaska National Guard confirmed.
In the end, it is no relief that Islamic extremists were not involved in this tragedy except, apparently, in Santiago’s own mind. There is no upside here.
Innocent people are dead, wounded and traumatized. The crazy man who perpetrated this horror is alive without a scratch on him. The left will jump on this tragedy as another excuse to deprive law-abiding citizens of their Second Amendment rights.
And we as a nation are becoming numb to it all.
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H/T The Blaze