Police Investigating What Caused N.J. Supermarket Gunman Terence Tyler To Snap
OLD BRIDGE, N.J. (CBSNewYork) - Grieving families are now planning funerals after a gunman opened fire at a New Jersey supermarket.
6:00 a.m. is the time that the Pathmark in Old Bridge would normally open, but it was still roped off on Saturday morning as a crime scene. Police are continuing to investigate what caused an employee to snap.
1010 WINS’ Glenn Schuck reports
At Old Bridge High School on Friday night, family and friends held onto one another. They displayed flowers and candles, mourning the loss of two former graduates, 18-year-old Cristina LoBrutto and 24-year-old Bryan Breen.
“He did wrestling — and I’m a wrestler too — and I found that out, but Cristina I have known since middle school,” former classmate Jean Pabon told CBS 2. “To find this out this morning, it’s just hard. It’s really hard.”
People who knew the young victims, like school board president Eugene Donofrio, struggled to hold back tears.
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“I’m personally friends of the LoBrutto family, and they were very active in that child’s life,” Donofrio said.
LoBrutto did not normally work the shift that she was on when she was murdered on Friday. She was filling in for cashier Miranda Miranda, who switched with her a few weeks ago. Miranda said she steered clear of killer Terence Tyler.
“The way he looked at me, that gave me a bad vibe,” Miranda said. ”So ever since that day I never really stood around him.”
Tyler, a 23-year-old former marine, never got over the death of his mother. That was all his family could point to as they tried to make sense of what would drive Tyler to shoot two of his co-workers before turning a gun on himself.
“He was always quiet, like, isolated,” Shanteya Dyson, Tyler’s cousin, said. ”Once his mother passed away, that was it.”
Family said that Tyler’s mother died a few years ago, and that Tyler fell into a depression. Tyler grew up in Bed-Stuy and joined the Marines in 2008. He served for two years, but family said that he regretted enlisting.
“He felt that he had no other choice,” Dyson said.
In 2009, while serving, Tyler eerily tweeted “I’m starting to see why plp go on killin sprees…” and other violence-filled messages.
On Friday — just two weeks into his job at Pathmark – Tyler clocked out of his overnight shift, only to return at around 4 a.m. dressed in fatigues with an AK-47. Police believe that he fired indiscriminately, killing LoBrutto and Breen.
“I do not believe that they were specifically targeted,” prosecutor Bruce Kaplan said. ”I believe that everybody in the store was a target.”
As details continue to emerge one man is being pointed to as a hero.
“Like that he triggered an alarm and told everyone to get out as soon as possible, run as fast as you can,” customer Melek Halil told CBS 2′s Steve Langford.
Halil was describing the actions of a store supervisor named Rolando, his actions may have saved the lives of the other twelve employees who were in the store at the time of the shooting.
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