A lone gunman with a rifle entered the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C. Wednesday afternoon and fatally wounded a security guard before being shot himself.
Police have identified the shooter as 88-year-old James W. von Brunn, a self-avowed white supremacist who ran a popular website raging against Jews, blacks and homosexuals.
According to police, von Brunn entered the Holocaust Museum and immediately began firing, wounding an unidentified security guard and sending hundreds of tourists scrambling for cover. Other museum guards quickly returned von Brunn's fire, seriously injuring him.
Both men were taken to nearby George Washington University Hospital, where the guard died hours later. Von Brunn is currently listed in critical condition.
While officials have not yet confirmed a motive for the shooting, it seems apparent that von Brunn's white supremacist views were a major factor. In his online book Kill the Best Gentiles, Brunn wrote "Over my years of adversity, it became clear to me that a JEW strategy had emerged: "Kill the Best Gentiles!" The tactics were WAR & DEBT."
"This is a longtime white supremacist and anti-Semite approaching the end of his life who may have decided to go out shooting," said Mark Potok, director of the Southern Poverty Law Center in an interview with the Washington Post.
Police also reportedly found a notebook on von Brunn's person listing several other locations, which they believe were possible additional targets.