Why Did Robert Hawkins Kill People? Who Were Robert Hawkins Victims? How Did Robert Hawkins Die? – On December 5, 2007, 19-year-old Robert Hawkins opened fire in a Von Maur department store at the Westroads Mall in Omaha, Nebraska, killing eight people and injuring four more. He then shot himself in the head to end his life. Since Charles Starkweather’s rampage in 1958 was the bloodiest mass murder in Nebraska.
‘Evil Lives Here: Something Is Different About Robbie,‘ an episode on Investigation Discovery explores one of the deadliest instances of a mass shooting in Nebraska.
The mass shooter had a long history of mental illness, which is thought to have contributed to his decision to commit such carnage after being provoked by a few recent occurrences. We’ve got your back if you’re curious about Robert’s victims and how he ended his life. So let’s just get started.
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Who Were the Victims of Robert Hawkins?
One of the deadliest mass killings in Nebraska history occurred on December 5, 2007, when an adolescent attacker opened fire with a semiautomatic assault weapon in front of the Von Maur department store at the Westroads Mall in Omaha, Nebraska. Eight people were killed in the incident between 1:43 and 1:49 pm, and four more people were injured. The eight victims of the senseless slaughter were:
Beverly Flynn, a 47-year-old gift wrapper, worked at the Von Maur store. She also became a real estate agent for NP Dodge Co. in 2006 and always planted a rose bush in every home she sold. She was shot in the chest, and the Creighton University Medical Center is where she passed away. Janet Jorgensen, 66, was a cheerful and friendly person who had worked for Von Maur’s gift department for many years. She is missed by her friends, husband, three children, and eight grandchildren. Both clients and coworkers loved her.
Gary Joy, 56, loved writing poetry and short stories in his own time. He had passed away even before he could be taken to the hospital, and he was a loving son to his 91-year-old mother, Inez Joy. John McDonald, 65, of Council Bluffs, Iowa, enjoyed music, played the guitar, and was a master at the bridge. When the incident occurred, he and his wife, Kathy McDonald, were at the Von Maur department store getting Christmas gifts packaged. They attempted to hide behind a chair, but he was shot and instantly killed.
Kim Scharf, Gary Scharf’s ex-wife, referred to the 48-year-old Lincoln resident as “Dudley-do-right” because of his unwavering commitment and honourable character. He was shot while stopped at the Von Maur store on his way back from a business trip. Angie Schuster, 36, was a manager at the time and had worked for Von Maur for more than ten years in the girls’ department. She might have been one of the first victims of the shooting because the store was close to the elevator that went to the third floor, according to police and family members.
Store manager Dianne Trent, 53, was praised by her neighbour as a wonderful and incredibly nice person. When she got home from work, she enjoyed taking care of her flowers, but she was tragically killed in the shooting. The shooting’s youngest victim was Maggie Webb, 24, who was recently transferred from Chicago to the Von Maur shop in Omaha. She was an Illinois native who had a business administration degree.
Why Did Robert Hawkins Kill People?
Ronald Hawkins and Maribel “Molly” Rodriguez welcomed Robert Arthur Hawkins into the world on May 17, 1988, at RAF Lakenheath in Suffolk, England. According to his parents, Robert was hospitalised for persistently violent conduct when he was barely four years old, who characterised him as a bright but troubled boy.
His tumultuous home life significantly influenced his diagnoses of posttraumatic stress disorder and attention deficit disorder. After threatening to kill his stepmother Candace Sims when he was 14, Robert was institutionalised, which marked the start of his five-year journey through a confusing network of juvenile care programmes.
His application to join the Army in the summer of 2007 was denied due to his extensive history of mental illnesses, which included later diagnoses of Oppositional Defiant Disorder and an unidentified mood disorder. In late 2006, Robert left his parent’s house and began living in Bellevue, Omaha. Debora Maruca-Kovac, his landlady, called him “troubled” and said he was unhappy following a breakup and his swift dismissal from McDonald’s approximately a month before the horrific shooting.
However, Robert’s mental issues did not significantly improve despite receiving treatment totalling more than $265,000. Sandra K. Markley, a deputy county attorney, involved in Robert’s case, stated: “I’ve been reviewing his file, and, of course, there is a lot of second-guessing. But there were no indications that he was harmful in this way.”
Todd Landry, the department of health and human services director of children and family programmes, added that “all appropriate services were provided when needed and as long as needed.” “It may be impossible to come up with an explanation,” the then-police chief of Omaha had said.
How Did Robert Hawkins Die?
When Robert started firing his semiautomatic assault rifle on December 5, 2007, he had already resorted to killing 8 people and injuring 4 more. The 19-year-old then used the same pistol to shoot himself in the head, taking his own life before being apprehended. In his Bellevue apartment, the police discovered multiple suicide letters that were addressed to his family.
A few of these were made public, revealing how Robert considered himself to be “a constant disappointment,” pleaded with his family not to miss him, and expressed regret for having caused them hardships since he was a young child. He wrote, “Just remember the good times we had together. I love you mommy. I love you dad.” The note ended with, “P.S. I’m really sorry.”
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