Who is Connor Sturgeon, the Louisville gunman? Basketball star, bank worker, mass shooter
He was a high school basketball star whose father coached the team.
He was a 25-year-old University of Alabama graduate who was pursuing a career in banking in Louisville.
But now he will be remembered as America’s latest mass shooter.
On Monday, Connor Sturgeon stormed the Old National Bank in downtown Louisville, Kentucky, where he worked armed with an AR-15-style rifle.
Inside, he gunned down five of his colleagues in the first-floor conference room.
Officers responded to the scene within minutes and exchanged gunfire with the gunman, who was ultimately shot dead.
Four victims died on the scene, before a fifth died in hospital later on Monday.
The victims, all executives at the bank, have been identified as: Tommy Elliott, 63, Jim Tutt, 64, Josh Barrick, 40, Juliana Farmer, 57, and Deana Eckert, 57.
Here’s everything we know about the suspect:
Sturgeon was identified by law enforcement as the shooter on Monday afternoon.
According to a LinkedIn account in his name, Sturgeon had worked at the bank as a syndications associate and portfolio banker.
A source told CNN that Sturgeon had worked at the bank for over a year but had been recently notified that he was going to be fired.
Prior to becoming a full-time employee, Sturgeon worked as a summer intern during his time at university.
Bank manager Rebecca Buchheit-Sims was on a Microsoft Teams meeting with the executives when the attack unfolded – leaving her helplessly watching her colleagues die.
She said she didn’t personally work with Sturgeon but knew of him because Sturgeon’s father coaches her son’s high school basketball team.
She said she had never seen any signs of violence or threats from the 25-year-old.
“His temperament is pretty low-key. I’ve never seen the kid get angry or upset about anything in public. He was pretty much just relaxed,” she said, describing him as “extremely intelligent” and with “just kind of a monotone personality”.
The motive for the attack remains unclear but the gunman is said to have left behind ominous warnings about his deadly plans for his family and friends to find.
In the lead-up to the attack, Sturgeon began posting concerning posts on Instagram, according to local reports.
His account, which has since been taken down, included a meme photo captioned: “I know what I have to do but I don’t know if I have the strength to do it”.
“I could burn this whole place down,” read another.
The shooter’s last post before the attack then read: “They won’t listen to words or protests. Let’s see if they hear this.”
Police dispatch audio, released by Broadcastify, also captured the minute-by-minute police response to Monday’s horror attack.
In the audio, the dispatcher is heard relaying to law enforcement officials on the scene that Sturgeon had called a friend before the attack and left a chilling voicemail saying he felt “suicidal” and planned to “kill everyone at the bank”.
Sturgeon had also written a note to his parents and a friend outlining his plans to open fire in the bank, a law enforcement source told CNN.
He then live-streamed his shooting rampage on Instagram on Monday.
Star basketball player who suffered concussions
In high school, Sturgeon was a star basketball player who is said to have suffered many concussions.
His family lived in Greenville, Indiana, according to the Louisville Courier-Journal, and he graduated from Floyd Central High School in Floyds Knobs, Indiana.
He played basketball, football and running track at the school.
His father was a coach on the basketball team and Sturgeon earned the nickname “Mr Floyd Central”.
A former classmate told The Daily Beast that Sturgeon suffered multiple concussions while playing football – so much so that he wore a helmet on the basketball court.
“We played football together in eighth grade. He was out most of the year because he had multiple concussions,” the former classmate, who did not want to be named, said.
“Then he had a couple more in high school.”
The classmate said he wondered if his injuries were linked to Monday’s shooting given the wider awareness around Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) today.
After high school, Sturgeon went on to attend the University of Alabama to study finance, before moving to Louisville.
While a student in Alabama, he detailed his struggles with self-esteem and making friends.
In a 2018 university essay for the university, seen by The Daily Beast, Sturgeon wrote about his plan to “improve myself as a whole”.
“My self-esteem has long been a problem for me,” he wrote.
“As a late bloomer in middle and high school, I struggled to a certain extent to fit in, and this has given me a somewhat negative self-image that persists today.
“Making friends has never been especially easy, so I have more experience than most in operating alone. Furthermore, college has introduced a whole new atmosphere and new challenges, so it is easy to feel like I am not doing as well as I should be.”
He continued: “This semester, however, I think I have begun to mature socially and am beginning to see improvement in this area. I have found that taking time out to take stock of how I feel and what I can do to feel better has helped me be more social and in turn feel better about myself.”
The five victims killed in Monday’s attack have been identified as Josh Barrick, 40; Tommy Elliott, 63; Jim Tutt, 64; Juliana Farmer, 57; and Deanna Eckert, 57.
The first four victims were pronounced dead on the scene while Eckert succumbed to her injuries in hospital.
All five executives at Old National Bank.
Elliott was senior vice president, Tutt was market executive, Barrick was senior vice president of commercial real estate, Farmer was commercial banking agent and Eckert was ââthe executive administrative officer.
Two of the victims were friends with Governor Andy Beshear, who spoke at an 11am press conference. During an emotional address at nearby Slugger Field, he confirmed that one of his friends was killed, and another was in surgery.
“This is awful,” he said. “I have a very close friend who didn’t make it today.”
That friend was Elliott. Mr Beshear said Elliott helped him in his early career and provided him life advice throughout their friendship.
“He was one of the people I talked to most in the world, and very rarely were we talking about my job,” the governor said.
He revealed that he banked with Old National Bank and formerly had an office in the building during his campaign for the attorney general’s office.
Another eight victims were hospitalised including two police officers who were shot by the gunman after responding to the scene.
One of those officers – Louisville Metro Police Department Officer Nickolas Wilt – was shot in the head. The officer, who was sworn in just days earlier, is in critical but stable condition following surgery.
Three of the wounded have since been discharged from hospital.
President Joe Biden put out a statement about the shooting on Monday afternoon.
“Once again, our nation mourns after a senseless act of gun violence – Jill and I pray for the lives lost and impacted by today’s shooting,” he said.
“Too many Americans are paying for the price of inaction with their lives.
“When will Republicans in Congress act to protect our communities?”
Once again, our nation mourns after a senseless act of gun violence – Jill and I pray for the lives lost and impacted by today's shooting.
Too many Americans are paying for the price of inaction with their lives.
When will Republicans in Congress act to protect our communities?
— President Biden (@POTUS) April 10, 2023
Kentucky Senator Mitch McConnell put out his own statement earlier in the day.
“Elaine and I are devastated by the news coming out of Louisville this morning. Thank you to LMPD and our first responders for your bravery at the scene,” he tweeted.
“We send our prayers to the victims, their families, and the city of Louisville as we await more information.”
Second shooting reported nearby
Shortly after the bank shooting, officers were called to the scene of a second shooting nearby.
At 11.20am, LMPD confirmed officers had been dispatched to 8th and Chestnut streets.
Police said that there is no active shooting situation and there is no indication the two incidents are related.
“There is NO active aggressor at JCTC at 8th Chestnut streets. We are confirming that there was a shooting outside, and the suspects fled prior to police arrival,” LMPD tweeted.