An Indian-origin lawyer in military style clothing emblazoned with a swastika pointing to his Nazi sympathies went on an early morning shooting rampage on Monday, Sep 26, injuring nine persons in Houston, Texas.
The Houston Police Homicide Division has confirmed that the suspect has been identified as Nathan Desai, 46, and he was killed by police.
Desai, a Nazi sympathizer, went on a 20-minute shooting rampage that injured nine had 2,600 rounds of ammunition, a .45 semi-automatic handgun and a .45 semi-automatic Thompson carbine on him. Along with these, an edged weapon still in its sheath was also recovered by the police.
Citing sources, the ABC13’s Eyewitness News said Desai used his car to stockpile ammunition and a tree for cover when he was shooting, right outside his condominium complex on Law Street.
The police said they did not know why Desai went on the rampage hitting people at random.
Desai’s name was written with the ‘S’ capitalised in media reports in Houston, making it sound European, but his father was identified as Prakash Desai.
All of his victims survived but one person was critically wounded and five others were hospitalised, Houston Police acting chief Martha Montalvo said.
Montalvo described the shooter as a lawyer who was having problems at his law firm. When the police responded to the shooting, he shot at them and was killed when cops returned fire, she said.
The shooter’s father, 80-year-old Prakash Desai (Houston Chronicle said that Prakash Desai is a retired geologist) told Eyewitness News that Nathan had been troubled because his law practice was not doing very well and according to ABC 13, he had no active civil or criminal cases based on the Harris County court records. He had only two new criminal cases since 2013.
He didn’t believe his son was the shooter as the two were said to have had dinner only 12 hours before the shooting.
John Elmore, the property manager for The Oaks at West University, where Desai lived, said Desai’s behaviour had been erratic for the last two months. He seemed paranoid and thought someone was “out to get him”, Elmore said.
In February, he and his law partner Kenneth McDaniel of 12 years parted ways and neighbours believed he was doing law work out of his condo.
“We made a mutual decision, roughly in February, to simply no longer operate as a partnership for economic reasons,” said McDaniel. “I feel very sorry for him and for those people.”
Desai owned several guns to protect himself against his clients, some of whom were “funny people and criminally-minded people”, his father said.
The daily reported that the police found in his flat several military items that went back to the Civil War.
Police found a Thompson submachine gun in his Porsche and a 0.45 caliber handgun that he used against the police.
The Chronicle said that the police used a robot to examine his car and his flat for explosives.