The Iowa gunman who opened fire on Perry High School last week appeared to have an active account on the internet chat platform Discord where he previously discussed school shootings and described “gearing up” moments before Thursday’s attack, NBC News has learned.
Dylan Butler, 17, killed sixth grader Ahmir Jolliff, 11, and injured four other students and three staff members, including principal Dan Marburger, before he died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Police said they also found an improvised explosive device at the scene.
Law enforcement is reviewing Butler’s use of social media and tech platforms, including Discord, according to a person close to the investigation.
In the minutes leading up to the shooting, Butler posted a video to TikTok from an account with the username “tooktoomuch” in what appeared to be a school bathroom. The Discord account that appeared to be posting about the shooting used the name “took2much.”
A Discord spokesperson confirmed to NBC News that the company believes the “took2much” screen name belonged to Butler.
NBC News viewed screenshots of a series of messages from the account to a group of online friends on Discord saying the user was at the school and ready “for what’s to come.”
Ten minutes later, the user wrote, “I’m f------ nervous, I’m the bathroom gearing up.”
The account also used a racial slur, writing two minutes later: “There’s a n----- in the bathroom, I need him to leave so I can assemble my guns.”
The Discord spokesperson did not respond when asked about those messages. The spokesperson said Discord had taken action against accounts and content believed to have belonged to the suspect.
“Our deepest sympathies are with the victims, their families, and the community in Perry, Iowa following yesterday’s horrific shooting. Discord has a zero-tolerance policy against content that glorifies violence and violent extremism, which is reflected in our Community Guidelines. We took immediate action against the suspect and his content, and are currently cooperating with law enforcement to assist them in their continuing investigation,” the spokesperson said in an emailed statement.
The user “took2much” was also part of a chatroom dedicated to discussing school shootings called “School Massacres Discussion,” according to a Discord user who saw the user in the chat. The person said they did not know Butler personally, and NBC News is not revealing their identity because they are a minor.
The Discord user said they had flagged the chatroom to the FBI in November, after which an FBI agent reached out over email and asked for more information. The user emailed the FBI agent screenshots of the server but did not hear back. The user said their report to the FBI did not include mention of the user “took2much.” The chatroom was closed before the shooting.
The FBI declined to comment.
Discord has previously been used by a mass shooter. In 2022, the convicted shooter in the Buffalo, New York, Tops market attack used Discord before the shooting to discuss combat gear and make what appeared to be a to-do list for the shooting. In December, Discord and police said a 13-year-old was stopped from committing an attack on a synagogue after Discord reported his online activities to authorities.