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Wait–Who Did The Jacksonville Fire Marshal Blame For The Madden Tournament Shooting?

Last weekend, David Katz, a man who was hospitalized twice for mental health issues, opened fire and killed two people at a Madden 19 tournament in Jacksonville, Florida. He wounded at least nine more as well; Katz reportedly snapped after losing in the event. A resident of South Baltimore, he bought two handguns legally, despite his mental health history. Also, there are more questions concerning the purchases since Maryland has the one handgun a month rule (via Baltimore Sun):


By his 16th birthday, David Katz had been admitted to Sheppard Pratt Hospital, had been prescribed anti-psychotic medication and had the police called on him more than once by his mother.

None of it prevented him from buying a handgun in Maryland.

Katz’s troubles — at least what’s documented in public court records — fall below state thresholds that prohibit someone with a mental disorder from buying a handgun.


Under state law, someone may buy no more than one handgun in 30 days. So it remains unclear how Katz was able to buy two in “recent weeks,” as the sheriff said. The sheriff’s office did not answer questions Tuesday about the purchases.


Under state law, someone may buy no more than one handgun in 30 days. So it remains unclear how Katz was able to buy two in “recent weeks,” as the sheriff said. The sheriff’s office did not answer questions Tuesday about the purchases.

Maryland blocks the sale of a handgun to anyone who has voluntarily entered a psychiatric treatment facility for at least 30 straight days.

Court records show Katz was admitted to Sheppard Pratt for nearly two weeks in 2007. He later spent 13 days at the Potomac Ridge mental health facility in Rockville. Neither stint would disqualify him from buying a handgun.

The records offer only a snapshot of his years of treatment. His parents, Richard and Elizabeth Katz, have not returned messages.

Katz was hospitalized twice for mental issues during his teenage years, being prescribed anti-psychotics, and having the police summoned by his parents, but he wasn’t involuntarily committed. Even if Katz had a concealed carry permit, which raises more eyebrows due to his mental state, Maryland and Florida don’t share reciprocity. In short, he had his guns in Florida illegally. It goes without saying; it’s his fault, right? Well, according to the Jacksonville Fire Marshal, it’s the fault of Chicago Pizza, who hosted the event (via Florida Times Union) [emphasis mine]:


Chicago Pizza was cited late Wednesday for having an un-permitted gaming room by the Jacksonville Fire Prevention Division, the same space where Sunday’s mass shooting left three people dead including a 24-year-old gunman from Baltimore, and about a dozen others injured.

And a bright orange fire marshal’s “cease and desist” notice has been posted due to other violations seen by an inspector Wednesday night through the front windows, stuck next to signs on the front door of the Jacksonville Landing restaurant that say “Stay Tuned for a Reopening Date.”

City fire inspectors say Chicago Pizza was not permitted to hold the video game tournament that turned deadly at 1:30 p.m. Sunday, according to its Wednesday code violation report. The report states the restaurant’s last approved building layout was submitted back in 2009, but the restaurant altered the layout plan without approval. That created the GLHF Game Bar, where this past weekend’s Madden NFL 19 video gaming tournament was held. That makes it an un-permitted game area, the fire department said.

If Chicago Pizza would not have altered the layout plan by creating an un-permitted game room area, the video game tournament would not have occurred, and thus, this incident would not have occurred at the Jacksonville Landing,” the fire department statement read. “This area was neither authorized nor a part of their submitted and approved building layout plan.”

Wait, so it’s Chicago Pizza’s fault that David Katz decided to murder people? While we don’t cite them often if ever, though I’m a huge fan, but Barstool Sports was spot on when they torched this marshal for suggesting an unpermitted layout caused this shooting to happen. The fault rests with Katz and Katz alone. And even if Chicago Pizza or anywhere else had the permits, one could assume that Katz would still have lashed out, hence why he brought guns with him—to a video game tournament—in the first place. He wasn’t right in the head. 


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