Activists Combat Misinformation Online About The Identity Of Louisville Shooter

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Activists are fighting a string of misinformation on the internet surrounding the identity of the Louisville, Kentucky shooter. After investigators revealed the Louisville shooter’s identity as 23-year-old Connor Sturgeon, the internet tracked down his social media profiles.  Sturgeon listed his pronouns in his bio, prompting conservative media personalities to falsely state that Connor Sturgeon was transgender.

Today’s mass shooting comes shortly after a recent mass shooting in Nashville, Tennessee. The Nashville shooting took place at the Covenant School, a Christian school in the Green Hills neighborhood of the city. The shooter was 28-year-old Audrey Elizabeth Hale, who reportedly identified as transgender. Gun lobbyists and conservative influencers have continued to weaponize the shooter’s trans identity against the community at large.

Sturgeon was reportedly a varsity basketball player in high school, and went on to graduate from the University of Alabama in 2020. Former classmates confirmed that he suffered multiple concussions in high school. He has since worked as a banker. Prior to the crime, Sturgeon posted a string of disturbing Instagram stories insinuating that he was planning a shooting. He was killed during an altercation with police today, but it is unclear if he committed suicide or an officer shot him.


Conservative Commentary

Conservative influencers continue to assert that trans people and Democratic voters are to blame for mass shootings, deeming their gender identities as mental illness. The majority of mass shootings committed in the past decade have been committed by men, according to The Violence Project.  As of 2021, 98% of shootings where committed by cisgender men. In addition to this statistic, several mass shootings in recent years were confirmed hate crimes against minorities.

The Background Of The Crime

Connor Sturgeon was a 23-year-old employee at Old National Bank.  The bank notified Sturgeon that he was going to be fired, according to CNN. In response, Sturgeon penned a letter to a friend and his parents about his intention to shoot the bank. Sturgeon live streamed the shooting on his Instagram account. Four victims are dead, and nine were sent to a local hospital. Three of these victims were released, and the other three are in critical condition.

Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear ordered flags to be flown at half mast today. Beshear also spoke to his personal connection to one of the victims, Tommy Elliot, who he said was “one of my closest friends.” Louisville Mayor Craig Greenberg confirmed that the city will set up an assistance center to those affected by the shooting.

The anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric comes amid a wave of policy changes across the U.S. Several states have issued bans on drag performers and gender-affirming healthcare for minors. The “Don’t Say Gay” bill in Florida continues to pick up speed, with some states considering issuing policy changes that would make it illegal for teachers to refer to trans and nonbinary students by their chosen names and pronouns.


President Biden reportedly spoke to Governor Beshear about the shooting. The crime comes shortly after Biden delivered a national address following the Nashville shooting, entreating Republicans to work towards a consensus on stronger gun control laws.

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