MILWAUKEE (AP) — The man who killed six people and injured four others at the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin was actively using the Internet to become more radical in his white supremacist beliefs in the months before the shooting rampage, according to a recently unsealed FBI warrant.
The court document shows federal agents quickly collected evidence of Wade Michael Page's Internet connections with white power groups. The documents say Page became increasingly interested in conspiracy theories and videos online. The warrant doesn't say what Page was viewing, but that it disturbed his girlfriend, Misty Cook.
Page, 40, and Cook, 32, were active participants in an online message forum for a white supremacist group and joined in dozens of the same conversations, according to research by the Anti-Defamation League and the Journal Sentinel (http://bit.ly/10uCGat).
Page was active on social media, having at least two Facebook pages, under the names "Wade Hammer" and "Jackboot," and was typical of others who used the Internet to become increasingly radical, the warrant said.
"FBI experts believe the Internet continues to serve as the primary radicalization instrument, used to recruit teenagers and young adults into the radical skinhead movement," the document said.
The FBI generated 200 investigative leads, interviewed 300 people and collected more than 200 pieces of evidence, Teresa L. Carlson, special agent in charge of the FBI's Milwaukee office, said in November.
The FBI eventually determined there was no conspiracy behind the shooting and that Page acted alone in the rampage, finding no evidence to suggest the attack was "directed or facilitated by any white supremacist group," the document said.
Members of the Sikh community have lobbied Congress to require the FBI to track hate crimes against Sikhs. In March, more than 100 members of Congress asked the FBI to track hate crimes against Sikhs, Hindus and Arab-Americans.
Information from: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, http://www.jsonline.com