A memorial setup near the scene of a mass shooting at the Allen Premium Outlets mall on May 9, 2023 in Allen, Texas. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
A social media profile seemingly connected to the Texas man who killed eight people at a Texas outlet mall provides a disturbing glimpse into the killer’s psyche. On Saturday, an outlet mall in Allen, Texas, a Dallas suburb, became the latest site of a deadly American mass shooting as Mauricio Garcia, 33, used a high-powered rifle to systematically shoot shoppers on Saturday afternoon. At the end of the bloodshed nine people were dead, including the shooter, who was shot by a police officer.
Authorities have not yet released a motive for the killing but stated they were analyzing his social media presence, specifically telling the New York Times they were examining an account on the Russian site OK.RU. Shortly after, the account was discovered by Bellingcat’s Aric Toler. The account had no friends and was seemingly used more as a journal than a social media account. The profile features screeds against minorities, neo-Nazi images, glorification of mass killers, mental health struggles, and long handwritten diary entries which feature names like “Diary of a Psychopathic Man-Child.” Chillingly, some of the more recent posts reference the outlet mall, and showed that he was researching the outlet’s peak hours.
The shooter also posted several images of weapons, and a tactical vest with a patch that said “RWDS” (Right-Wing Death Squad), which authorities said the man had on him during the shooting. Other photos show off a large swastika tattoo he had recently gotten on his chest. The account, which goes back years, has many posts that contain screeds against Jewish people, Black people, and women. At one point he explicitly wrote about being a member of the incel community and wrote about frequenting far-right websites. On top of the swastika tattoo, the user posted multiple pro-Nazi memes—including one that acknowledged the strangeness of being a Latino neo-Nazi.
Neo-Nazism in the Latino community isn’t unheard of. In November of last year, neo-Nazis held a large concert in Mexico City, and in recent years the white nationalist movement has seen the rise of several major Latino figures like Nicholas Fuentes, who the shooter mentioned in a post, and Proud Boys Leader Enrique Tarrio. Experts say there are several reasons for this particularly confusing brand of neo-Nazism, including that some Latinos consider themselves ethnically white, online misinformation, and an increase in antisemitic and anti-Black rhetoric.
The shooter seemingly had an obsession with mass killers. In a recent post referencing a Nashville shooting where six people, including three children, were killed at a Christian school, the Texas shooter celebrated the death count. The gamification of mass shootings has long worried experts, with new mass shooters hoping to break the “high score.”
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“Let’s face it, killing people in an interesting way is an art that earns a lot of respect, just inherently,” he wrote. On the day before the shooting, he posted a disjointed message in which he instructed for there to be no funeral for him and referenced Jeffery Dahmer, “American History X,” “A Goofy Movie,” and several songs. He also recently uploaded a YouTube video in which he removed a scream mask and said, through a voice modulator, “not what you were expecting.” Several things connect the social media account to the shooter: They share the same age, and the account posted an identification card with the same birthday as the killer, a speeding ticket with his name on it, and photos of tattoos that were seen in public photos of the killer's body. Authorities previously said they were looking into social media posts by the man. The account also posted about far-right influencer Fuentes, who infamously appeared on Alex Jones alongside Kanye West as the rapper spoke of his love of Hitler, and right-wing podcaster Tim Pool. In one post, the shooter speaks about praising Hitler in the face of a progressive teacher; the post opens with “this was inspired by Libs of TikTok” and ends with “Heil Hitler.”In the right-wing sphere in which these people operate—including Twitter CEO Elon Musk— spent much of yesterday attempting to portray the social media account as a “psyop” that was set up by either Russia or the CIA. A fake mugshot was likewise being spread in order to sow doubt about the legitimacy of the account. Follow Mack Lamoureux on Twitter.Want the best of VICE News straight to your inbox? Sign up here.