I don’t know why he did what he did, and I’ll never be able to ask him why,” Cathleen Alexis said. “Aaron is now in a place where he can no longer do harm to anyone and for that I am glad.”
A small group holds a candle light vigil on Freedom Plaza to remember the victims of the shooting at the Washington Navy Yard, Monday, Sept. 16, 2013, in Washington. (Photo by J. Scott Applewhite/AP)
The mother of Navy Yard shooter Aaron Alexis is speaking out.
Cathleen Alexis briefly spoke from her Brooklyn, N.Y., home on Wednesday morning, expressing remorse for the 12 people her son shot to death in Washington, D.C., on Monday.
“Our son, Aaron Alexis, has murdered 12 people and wounded several others. His actions have had a profound and everlasting effect on the families of the victims,” she said in an audio statement.
She gave no personal details about her son, a naval reservist who had been working as a contractor. He was subsequently killed by police during the shooting. NBC News sources said Alexis had been treated several times for psychological issues, including sleep deprivation, anger, and paranoia.
He had also been disciplined for insubordination and disorderly conduct during his time in the service between May 2007 and January 2011.
“I don’t know why he did what he did, and I’ll never be able to ask him why,” Cathleen Alexis said. “Aaron is now in a place where he can no longer do harm to anyone and for that I am glad.”
She also apologized on behalf of her 34-year-old son. “To the families of the victims, I am so, so very sorry that this has happened. My heart is broken.”
The FBI is still trying to learn more about Aaron Alexis’ motives. At a press conference on Tuesday afternoon, officials said he entered the Navy Yard facility with a “valid pass” and they are confident he acted alone. He arrived in the D.C. area around Aug. 25.