18 murdered in deadliest shooting in Maine’s history

On Oct. 26, Robert Card killed 18 people and injured 13 at a bar and bowling alley in Lewiston, Maine. Days later, Card was found dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. This shooting was the deadliest mass killing in all of Maine’s history; there have been over 500 mass shootings in 2023 according to The Harvard Gazette.

Seven people were killed at the Just-In-Time Recreation bowling alley and eight died at Schemengees Bar & Grill. Three more died while being transported to Central Maine Medical Center; all victims were between the ages of 14 and 73.

Prior to the shooting, according to Card’s ex-wife and teenage son, he started hearing voices and soon after, he obtained 10-15 guns from his brother’s house. Card attended an annual training with his Army Reserve unit at Camp Smith located in New York. While there, Card made an accusation that three people called him a pedophile. He shoved one of those soldiers and proceeded to lock himself inside his room and declined interaction. He was convinced that multiple businesses were portraying him as a pedophile online. Two of the businesses he believed were accusing him were the ones he targeted.

Card was placed in a treatment facility for U.S. military personnel and soon after was moved to a psychiatric hospital, where he stayed for two weeks. The sheriff’s office was informed of his hospitalization but they did not take the step in removing his possession of guns. However, the army removed his access to military weapons and announced that he was not deployable.

Through voiced concerns, a sergeant tried to visit Card, although Card refused to acknowledge him and did not answer the door. The course of action was left to be decided by the family. The siblings of Card attempted to overtake the situation and went to his house where Card answered the door, armed with a gun. His siblings notified the police that Card had been in a relationship with someone he met at Schemengees Bar & Grille and had stopped taking his prescribed medication.

Throughout the circumstances of these previous events, he told many people he had plans of violence. No course of action was taken to prevent brutality from occurring. Card committed the nation’s deadliest mass shooting of the year.