MILLERSVILLE, Md. (AP) — A man accused of firing at five public places in Maryland, including a building at the National Security Agency, chose his targets at random, police said Wednesday.
Anne Arundel County Chief Timothy Altomare said the shootings over the past week evoked memories of two snipers who killed 10 people in 2002 in the Washington area. Despite the fear created by the latest shootings, Altomare said everyone is "alive and well."
"Most of us here probably, in some way, shape or form, are aware of the events 15 years ago with the D.C. sniper case," Altomare said at a news conference with officers from the FBI and Howard and Prince George's counties. "As soon as we started to hear about the possibility of this stuff being linked, we kicked every effort we had into overdrive."
That spurred a large-scale manhunt that ended Tuesday in the capture of Hong Young, 35, of Beltsville. He was charged with attempted murder and assault in the first shooting Feb. 24 near Arundel Mills mall. Police said the other shootings were linked by ballistic evidence or surveillance video.
Prince George's County Police searched Young's two-story, red-brick home Wednesday and said they found ten weapons, including several handguns, a cross bow, and hundreds of rounds of ammunition.
Anne Arundel police spokesman T.J. Smith said Young was being monitored at a local hospital and was under police guard.
Authorities didn't know if he had an attorney.
Two Anne Arundel officers took him into custody after spotting a 1999 Lincoln Town Car seen near the site of the first shooting. Smith said stores were closed, so the vehicle's presence was suspicious. The officers approached the car and saw shell casings and a handgun inside.
Investigators later matched the casings and a .380 semi-automatic handgun to last week's shooting. One person was hurt by broken glass from a vehicle window in that case. Another person was similarly injured Tuesday in a shooting along a busy highway in Prince George's.
No one was hurt Tuesday in the NSA shooting or in Monday's shootings outside at Walmart in Laurel and a movie theater in Columbia. The sites are within a 12-mile radius in the Baltimore-Washington area.
"Clearly, he was continuing to do it until he got caught," Smith said. "This guy apparently has some other issues going on (that) our detectives continue to follow up on."
Smith declined to give details, citing health privacy laws. Smith said he was taken into custody without incident.
Young filed for divorce in September after nearly seven years of marriage, but the case was dismissed Monday because his wife had not been served with documents in the case, according to court records in Prince George's.
Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services Secretary Stephen Moyer said Young was a prison guard from January 2012 to May 2014.
"There was nothing significant about his employment," Moyer said. "He was assigned to one of the medium (security) facilities in Jessup. He resigned. There was nothing remarkable about his file."
Smith said investigators were working to determine a motive, but did not believe the shootings were terrorism.