Judge orders FBI to hand over trans school shooter Audrey Hale's manifesto


A federal judge in Tennessee has ordered the FBI to hand over the "manifesto" left behind by a transgender killer who gunned down three adults and three children at the Covenant Christian School in Nashville last year before responding officers put an end to the mayhem.

Audrey Elizabeth Hale, who police said identified as a trans male and went by Aiden, shot her way into the school in March 2023, killing Mike Hill, 61, Cynthia Peak, 61, Katherine Koonce, 60, and three 9-year-olds, Hallie Scruggs, Evelyn Dieckhaus and William Kinney.

Metropolitan Nashville Police Chief John Drake told reporters that officers recovered a "manifesto" from Hale's car as well as other documents, including a hand-drawn map of the school. He said last year it would be released, but it has not been.

Even though police shot the suspect dead on the school's second floor, the FBI has repeatedly refused to release the manifesto, arguing that doing so "could reasonably be expected to interfere with enforcement proceedings."

The parent company of the Tennessee Star, a local newspaper, sued the FBI after the bureau denied its public records request under the Freedom of Information Act.

"It has been long enough, and the public has an urgent right to know why this tragedy happened, how future events may be prevented, and what policies should be in place to address this and other similar tragedies," lawyers for the newspaper wrote in a federal complaint. "[The] FBI has no right to retain a monopoly on this information."

The FBI sought to have the complaint dismissed, but Judge Aleta Trauger of the Middle District of Tennessee said the bureau had failed to support its position "with sufficient clarity or detail" and ordered it to submit the manifesto to the court, so she could review the materials.... (Read more)

Submitted 31 days ago

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