Seth Udinski, FISM News
A horrifying massacre occurred in Florida on Sunday at the hands of a former United States Marine.
33-year-old Bryan Riley opened fire inside two separate homes in Lakeland, Florida on Sunday, killing four people and wounding another. One victim was identified as Justice Gleason, age 40. The other three were unidentified – a 62-year-old woman, a 33-year-old woman, and her 3-month old son. An 11-year-old girl was also shot multiple times but is stable. After he was taken into custody, Riley made a failed attempt to overtake an officer and steal the officer’s weapon before again being subdued.
Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd described the scene afterward. Please be advised, the description is disturbing,
We heard another volley [of gunfire], and a woman scream and a baby whimper. Our lieutenant tried to make entry into the front of the house and it was barricaded. We discovered a man, a woman and an infant in the mother’s arms all shot to death. We went to the house directly behind and found another lady shot to death.
At this point, the motive behind Riley’s horrific actions is relatively unclear. He served in the Marine Corps for four years and served tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan before an honorable discharge. He now faces multiple charges, including first-degree murder, attempted murder of a law enforcement officer, and several other counts.
There was no apparent warning signs in this man’s behavior prior to the incident, and reports say he had no previous connection with his victims. His girlfriend said that he had dealt with PTSD, but was never violent. Apparently, he is not searching for a plea of innocence. He told law enforcement officers that he killed the baby boy “because I’m a sick guy. I want to confess all of it and be sent to jail.” He also revealed to deputies that he was high on methamphetamines during the attack.
This is a heart wrenching situation, and Christians need to be praying for the victim’s loved ones, the community, and the man who committed this atrocity.