Sudden Jihad Syndrome? Maybe. This story confirms that Talovic was a Muslim — which of course we already knew, for if he had been a Christian the mainstream media would not have failed to take prominent note of that fact. The serenity with which he dispatched his victims suggests that he may have thought he was doing the will of Allah. But there is no firm indication either way. “6 minutes of horror,” by Pat Reavy and Ben Winslow in the Deseret Morning News, with thanks to Rick:
In just six minutes, 18-year-old Sulejman Talovic left a tragic path of destruction that forever changed the lives of dozens of people.
“His intent was to shoot as many people as he possibly could,” said Salt Lake City Police Chief Chris Burbank.
Witnesses told the Deseret Morning News that Talovic appeared to be “hunting” people. Some described a calm expression on his face as he aimed his shotgun and fired.
On Tuesday morning, police detectives were in South Salt Lake, questioning employees at the Aramark Uniform Supply business where Talovic had worked since December. Aramark managers and a company spokeswoman declined to comment. One employee described Talovic as “quiet.”
Police said Talovic had a juvenile record of only four minor offenses. None of his arrests were for violent crimes.
The man had lived at a house with his mother and three younger sisters near the Utah State Fairpark. Neither his mother nor his sisters would answer the door or respond to phone calls Tuesday, although a person inside would pick up the phone and then quickly hang up.
Ajka Omerovic, who said she was Talovic’s aunt, visited the home Tuesday afternoon. She told the Deseret Morning News that Talovic had been “a good boy.” She said the family are Muslims from Bosnia who had lived in the vicinity of Sarajevo.
Omerovic said she believed the young man’s mother had been living here for about four years. Omerovic was extremely distraught and at first said she did not speak English. But she did try to conduct an interview. She and a younger man went inside the home and left with a large cage with two birds in it.
“We want to know what happened, just like you guys,” Omerovic told reporters. “We have no idea…. We know him as a good boy.”
Asked what he was like, she replied, “He liked everybody, so I don’t know what happened.”
His mother is in “a difficult situation “” she is very sick,” she added.
Many neighbors said that while the mother and young girls were always pleasant and the girls often played with other neighborhood children, Talovic kept to himself.
“I don’t even know that there is a man living there,” said neighbor Yasmin Castellanos.
“It’s always these kinds of kids,” Schwam said. “It’s the kids who are distraught, who have nothing to live for…who cause the most severe damage. They don’t know what else to do. In their mind, they’re at the end of their rope.”