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Shooting Blamed On Anti-Government Bias

Neighbor says Piccard told him he had stomach cancer

October 11, 2013

WHEELING — Former police officer Thomas Piccard’s animosity toward the federal government motivated him to unload a hailstorm of gunfire at the Federal Building on Wednesday, U.S. Attorney William ....

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Oct-14-13 2:59 PM

When I think about how easily this deranged man could have turned that weapon upon me or any other innocent bystander I shudder to read all of the support he has received. So what if he had cancer and mental illness? As much of a shame as that is it does not give anyone the right to pick up a gun and go crazy in public. Period. I see so many posters here decrying all the money Government spends on its less fortunate and no one crying about the thousands of dollars of damage Mr Crazy Cop did to the building he decided to vandalize. Everyone wants to molly coddle him and his ilk as they continue to act out like the crazy people they are.If you are so unhappy as to need to pick up a gun and shoot something, please have the common decency to limit it to yourself at home.

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Oct-13-13 4:58 AM

I happen to think that the word "demons" implies evil within. Ask LE the right questions. Is it true that if an officer is diagnosed as bi-polar and takes medication to stabalize his mood, with doctors approval, can he continue to work and carry a gun? NO If an officer IS bi-polar and suffers mood swings but does not get treatment and meds, then can he carry a gun? Yes So if you were a cop, would you seek help for mental illness? NOPE a bit bass ackwards

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Oct-12-13 4:50 PM

@sounder - 'Just great; West Virginia, a state created more as a political whim after the conclusion of a Civil War '

Actually, West Virginia became a state in 1863. That would be DURING the Civil War.

Might be best to actually study history before making up stories about the past.

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Oct-12-13 4:44 PM

@bloomin - '...How dare people say that this man has personal demons....'

Perhaps those who knew him were trying to make an oblique reference to 'the demon rum' in an effort to deflect the Mayor's inane and unsupported tying of this sad episode to an 'anti-government' stance.

Who's a lot of words from a lot of people who were certainly silent for the past two decades regarding the state of this poor fellow.

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Oct-12-13 3:03 PM

Simply put-we need to rid of the stigma and discrimination of mental illness. We could start with our choice of words. Depression is a brain disease just like multiple sclerosis is.

I dont know why he did it. What I do know is that active police officers often do not get treatment, because if they are diagnosed the often cannot carry a gun.

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Oct-12-13 1:01 PM


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Oct-12-13 12:41 PM

Coffee derides anti-govt rhetoric as the cause of this shooting, yet I'm quite sure calling people suicide bombers, terrorists, hostage takers, killers of children and the elderly is just dandy rhetoric against big govt opponents!!

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Oct-12-13 8:13 AM

Gregwhore "He chocked(sic) in the clutch." Are you a {censored} mechanic or just a regular idiot?

Another example of Liberal Compassion.

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Oct-11-13 9:40 PM

I think the anti-government bias claim by Mr. Ihlenfeld is a bit premature. I haven't seen a single thing in all of the articles to date that references anti-government bias. Various articles have made reference to his demons, and he told a neighbor he had stomach cancer. Let's hope a forensic autopsy will be done to determine if that was true, and if it was, that could certainly be a reason to want to die. A psychologist in the Board of trade building said she suspected it was a case of suicide by cop. I tend to agree with her. Mr. Piccard had ample opportunities to shoot passersby, cars, etc. He continued to shoot at the building even as law enforcment approached him. What better target to ensure a quick response. He made no attempt to shoot the officers which tells me his goal was to die, just not by his own hand. Very sad and heart goes out to his famiily.

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Oct-11-13 9:38 PM

Has it been confirmed that he really did have cancer?

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Oct-11-13 8:42 PM

I feel sickened that a former officer did not get the help that he needed. This could be anyones brother, father, or son. Mental illness is seen as a weakness and sufferers are blamed. The stigma is what prevents people from seeking help. Diagnosed with cancer the day before? he likely did not even know the prognosis or give it a chance. Im sure he was suffering before this diagnosis. Maybe our city will become more knowledgable and sensative about the depression that plagues so many residents.

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Oct-11-13 3:39 PM

EVERYBODY is "upset with the government" these days but we don't ever think of doing something like this

If government in general wasn't so corrupt, treasonous, and tyrannical, these things would NEVER happen

This is EXACTLY why local, state, and federal buildings everywhere have been slowly building a fortress around themselves while the people say and DO nothing to stop it

Back when HONEST government was the norm, ALL these places were open and available to the people and needed no security at all

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Oct-11-13 2:25 PM

Hey Caltransplant why don't you cool it, the only person onhere being ignorant is you. Why don't you save that trash talk for the bedroom. We have no need for it here.

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Oct-11-13 1:18 PM

Just great; West Virginia, a state created more as a political whim after the conclusion of a Civil War has now become the source for guarding the Constitution and it's interpretation. You've got to be kidding? Those former counties of the Commonwealth of Virginia who have more or less been kept around as a state because the financial and business communities in Pittsburgh, Cleveland and New York City saw a faux state government set up to allow easy pickings for about any endeavour and dubious enterprise; no worries about an ineffective and incompetent state government

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Oct-11-13 12:43 PM

I guess political appointees have to follow the official line and say what they're ordered to say. The White House has been salivating for a face to put with the shutdown "insurgents," but none fit the bill so far. Navy yard shooter antigovernment? No. Whacko. Obama's babymommy antigovernment? No. Probable whacko. Wheeling shooter antigovernment? Had stomach cancer, waved away bystanders before he started, apparently didn't target people in the building, and must have known that cops were less than a minute away. Suicide by cop? No, Ihlenbama says, he was some right-wing extremist fueled by GOP shutdown fever.

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Oct-11-13 12:00 PM

The anti-government editor was glad 34-year-old Aaron Alexis, a former Navy reservist, opened fire inside a Washington Navy Yard headquarters building with a shotgun instead of an assault weapon. He is likely disappointed with what witnesses reported about this shooting by a reported anti-government American.

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Oct-11-13 11:19 AM

Should be "Let's" Sorry

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Oct-11-13 11:18 AM

Is this the case of someone going off the "Deep End" or is there more to it? Lit's get the story straight before it gets added too and all twisted.

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Oct-11-13 10:15 AM

"Those who beat swords into ploughshares wind up plowing for those who do not."


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Oct-11-13 9:07 AM

Ihlenfeld should have kept his mouth shut until all the evidence is gathered.

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Oct-11-13 9:00 AM

triton: I don't think he was crazy, just disturbed, but I can only guess that if he in fact had cancer, perhaps this was his ticket out. The American people do not embrace hate, rather reject tyranny, which is the course our president has taken and a revolution, either at the ballot box or in the streets, is on the horizon. It is the divisiveness that our president has created that is the root cause of our nation's unrest, and fixing his mess will be no easy task.

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Oct-11-13 8:58 AM

Thnx for proving my point daMorons...

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Oct-11-13 8:39 AM

Perhaps he was just crazy and not the symbol of some cause. We don't anything really at this point but that does not stop people from trying to adopt a political stance for this act of madness. If he was suffering from cancer and knew that he was going to die its possible that he chose to die that way. The madmen on the far right will see his actions as heroic and not sad, the equally madmen on the left will use the incident to advance even more poiltical madness. Curious that he did not target anyone, he targeted the building which was dangerous enough, but he could have shot people and did not. And he did not flee indicating he knew he would die. Bizarre conduct and quickly being absorbed into the bizarre conduct of the morons on the right and left who have lost their minds as well. We need moderate leaders, and less of the activist media that stirs people up to hate each other. The tone of the postings indicate the level of hate that people have come to embrace, eagerly.

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Oct-11-13 8:31 AM

Coughy "now see the damage their anti-government rhetoric causes."

Sounds like what the British said in 1776.

Got a big problem with that First Amendment, do you ya' (Cough Cough) Coughy!

You are nice lapdog Brownshirt. The Gestapo will be sure to kill you LAST.

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Oct-11-13 8:25 AM

I can't believe the praise this guy is getting. It almost sounds like many support his actions...even law enforcement aren't maintaining professional demeanor. Is sainthood being considered?

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