The US Army today identified Sgt. John Russell as the man being held in the shooting deaths of five soldier at a stress clinic on a US base in Baghdad yesterday, CNN reports, as details of the assault emerged. Commanders had asked Russell, a 44-year-old Texan on his third tour in Iraq, to seek counseling and took the rare step of confiscating his weapon, the Washington Post adds. Russell was escorted to the clinic, but on arrival got into a verbal altercation with staff and was told to leave.
As he was being driven away, Russell grabbed his escort’s gun and ordered him out of the vehicle. Then he drove back to the clinic and opened fire, killing two staff members and three enlisted soldiers. Russell was charged with five counts of murder and one count of aggravated assault.