Today the state of Louisiana released its final report on the shooting of Gavin Long, the man who killed three police officers and wounded three more in Baton Rouge last summer. The report proves Long’s motivation for the shooting was exactly what it appeared to be at the time, i.e. he was angry over recent police shootings of black men and wanted “to create substantial change.”
The report reveals that Long researched the home addresses of the officers involved in the death of Alton Sterling. “The search of Long’s laptop showed it was used to search for the addresses, phone numbers, and biographical information of the two BRPD officers involved in the Alton Sterling shooting,” the report reads. The report also has a section on noteworthy social media postings which highlights his views on the role of violence in social change:
Long has multiple videos posted to his YouTube account, “Convos with Cosmo,” including one where Long states that he is in Dallas, Texas. Long posted the video on July 10, 2016, which was three days after five law enforcement officers were ambushed and killed. In the video, Long states that “100% of revolutions, of victims fighting their oppressors… have been successful through fighting back, through bloodshed.” He goes on to talk about how he does not believe protesting is ever successful because “revenue and blood” are the only thing that gets through to oppressors.
That YouTube statement was discovered shortly after the shooting, but the suicide note Long left in his car was released today for the first time. From the NY Times:
The man who opened fire last summer on law enforcement officers in Baton Rouge, La., killing two policemen and a deputy sheriff, carried out his ambush “to create substantial change within America’s police force and judicial system,” according to a suicide note that investigators released on Friday.
In a handwritten letter that ran to a third page, the gunman, Gavin Long, said his attack was “a necessary evil” that he hoped would compel “good” law enforcement officers to confront wrongdoing and misconduct in American policing.
The note concludes, “A sacrifice for my people & a sacrifice for the people.” Also revealed today, Long left a printout from an Islamic holy book which was mostly in Arabic. From the report:
There are multiple reasons to deem this printout as noteworthy. It references asking forgiveness from Allah and includes a prayer passage wherein it states that repeating the prayer and dying on the same day guarantees the person will go to paradise. The printout, in conjuncture with his suicide note, appears to support evidence of a premeditated attack on law enforcement that Long did not plan to survive.
No police officers will be charged in connection with Long’s death.