Jacksonville psychologist believes Dollar General shooter feared those who were different from him

After the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office released the hate-filled manifesto left behind by the gunman of the Dollar General shooting, a local psychologist is sharing some insight on how a person could become radicalized.

The manifesto, written by the 21-year-old Dollar General shooter is 27 pages long.

The shooter killed three Black people during his racially motivated attack that happened in late August.

The three victims, AJ Laguerre Jr., 19, Angela Carr, 52, and Jerrald Gallion, 29, are memorialized outside of the store, where they lost their lives.

The manifesto is filled with derogatory terms towards Black people. It also talks about killing them.

“First, we have to give a little background from an evolutionary perspective, we are tribal beings. We’re all generally wired to love the in-group and potentially have aggression towards the outgroup,” Clinical Psychologist Dr. Justin D’Arienzo said.

D’Arienzo said the shooter was someone who feared those who were different from him.

The shooter was a white man, and at one point in the manifesto he writes, “In our towns, we’re foreigners now.”

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According to an article by Forbes from 2022, research done by White Men’s Leadership said a study of white men and diversity, equity and inclusion shows nearly 70% reported feeling forgotten by DEI efforts.

D’Arienzo said he believes social media plays a huge role in a person becoming radicalized.

“I hate to blame social media but I’m going to blame it because there’s such an ease of access to it. It’s usually someone that is aggrieved and they happen to come across something and it peaks and interest. and Maybe they’ve been hurt by someone that resembles what they’re seeing as being the target in social media that they’re reviewing, and then they start exploring,” D’Arienzo said.

MORE | The father of the Dollar General gunman called 911 to try and help police, but it was too late

News4JAX reached out to the FBI to ask them if there’s anything parents or relatives should look out for if they believe their loved one is being radicalized.

Officials shared some warning signs to look out for, including: giving out a pre-attack manifesto or final statement, surveilling potential attack targets and unusual efforts to obtain explosives.

D’Arienzo says if you notice these, it’s best to speak with your loved one.

“You want to use a gentle approach to talk to them about it you want to provide education in a gentle way,” D’Arienzo said.

D’Arienzo said another good way to get through to the person who might be mobilizing to commit an attack is by having someone they trust to try and talk to them.

The FBI also sent News4JAX a statement when we requested an interview. The statement says, in part:

“The FBI is strong in our belief that everyone should feel safe where they live, and no one should be concerned that they could be targeted in an act of violence based on how they look, where they’re from, or any other part of their identity. We will continue to work closely with our law enforcement and community partners to protect the rights of each and every American.”

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