Perceived Grievances Drove Virginia Beach Gunman to Kill 12, F.B.I. Finds

A city engineer was obsessed for years with perceived workplace grievances before killing 12 people in a 2019 shooting at a municipal complex in Virginia Beach, the F.B.I. said this week, releasing the findings of a behavioral analysis that provided new insight on a motive for the attack.

The gunman, DeWayne Craddock, who was fatally wounded by the police, had become alienated from his co-workers over how they viewed him and his own perception of his job performance, according to the findings by the bureau’s Behavioral Analysis Unit.

“The shooter’s inflated sense of self-importance contributed to this conflict and led him to believe he was unjustly and repeatedly criticized and slighted,” the bureau concluded. “Violence was viewed by the shooter as a way to reconcile this conflict and restore his perverted view of justice.”

The findings, which were released on Wednesday, offer a measure of explanation for what can be inexplicable for those investigating some of the nation’s deadliest mass shootings: the mind-set of a gunman. Several of those shootings remain mysteries, with investigators unable to determine a motive.

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