Sanders: Sickened at shooting attack by possible supporter

Wednesday, 21 Jun, 2017

James graduated Belleville West High School in 1968.

House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La), among others, was shot.

Hodgkinson built a life in Bellville, a suburb of St. Louis, with a modest business, a wife and a succession of foster children.

Four victims were shot and two had secondary injuries after a gunman opened fire at a practice for a Congressional baseball game on Wednesday in Alexandria, Virginia.

James Tom Hodgkinson was born and raised in Belleville, Illinois, one of three children.

Suzanne Hodgkinson was visibly shaken during the interview as she was escorted by St. Clair Deputy Chief Rick Wagner.

"I can't believe he did this", Sue said.

"He was the type of person that if you challenged him, he wouldn't back off", said lifelong friend Dale Walsh, 65.

Exasperated and seemingly at a loss to explain the shooting, she said: "I don't know anything about this". Crystal Griner, one of the Capitol Police officers, was hit in the ankle and is in good condition at MedStar Washington.

Others say things like this just don't happen where they are from.

Mika, a former congressional staffer, is a lobbyist for Tyson Foods.

Stephen Brennwald, an attorney who said he saw the man every time he visited the facility recently, said he never recalled him talking to anyone.

Schaumleffel said he's yet to speak to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

"He's just been a radical nut", Karmen Schaumleffel said about Hodgkinson.

Later that afternoon, it was reported that the sole shooter involved was 66-year-old Belleville, Illinois, resident James T. Hodgkinson, who was shot and killed on the scene. He always drank Budweiser from a can and drank alone, barely speaking to anyone, including the bartenders.

She said Hodgkinson made preparations for leaving, selling nearly everything he owned from his businesses before the trip. And to get a better sense of the political climate, I stopped by a local softball league game here last night, spoke to some people there.

Members of a YMCA near the shooting site in Virginia say Hodgkinson spent time there. The FBI phoned the congressmen to let them know that their names were on an assassination list found on the shooter.

Until recently, Hodgkinson ran a home-inspection business out of his house in southern IL.

But there were no signs of violent sentiments on his Facebook page. Bernie Sanders, an independent who past year made an unsuccessful presidential bid.

Hodgkinson did openly support Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, using Sanders as his Facebook cover photo, and volunteering for his presidential campaign.

According to the Belleville News-Democrat, he wrote frequent letters to the editor between 2008 and 2012, criticizing Republicans' tax policies. Many included complaints about the same theme: income inequality.

Sue Hodgkinson spoke to reporters Thursday outside her IL home. According to the court clerk, the charges were dismissed in November of that year.

The law enforcement source tells CNN that it's not clear it is an assassination list. "I started yelling at him, 'Hey, stop shooting; there's houses over here".