Seven weeks after Dallas police identified Micah Xavier Johnson as the shooter in the deaths of five local officers, The Associated Press reports that Johnson suffered from Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome (PTSD).
It’s a complication that many suspected when they learned that Johnson, a 25-year-old Black man, had previously served in Afghanistan as an Army Reservist. The AP secured his records from the Veterans Health Administration via a Freedom of Information Act request. Per The AP:
Micah Johnson had sought treatment for anxiety, depression and hallucinations, telling doctors that he experienced nightmares after witnessing fellow soldiers getting blown in half. He also said he heard voices and mortars exploding.
Johnson was in the war zone for nine months. When he returned to U.S. soil, he told doctors he was having panic attacks a few times each week. He was screened for PTSD, but was never officially diagnosed. Doctors with the VA North Texas Health Care System concluded that there was little chance of him hurting himself or anyone else and he was “not felt to be psychotic by presentation or observation.”
Johnson also told doctors that he was angry and irritable and had a difficult time being around other people. “I feel like I can’t trust all of these strangers around me,” he said. He went home with prescriptions for a muscle relaxer, an antidepressant, anti-anxiety medication and sleeping pills.
Johnson allegedly killed five local police officers and wounded nine additional people. He was killed with a bomb-toting robot following an hours-long standoff with Dallas cops. Police Chief David Brown said that Johnson was “upset about Black Lives Matter” and recent police shootings, and that he “wanted to kill White people, especially White officers.”