AUGUSTA, Maine — An independent commission is pushing to obtain subpoena power in order to access the military service records of the shooter responsible for the mass shooting that claimed the lives of 18 people last month in Lewiston, Maine. This move comes as part of the ongoing review of the events leading up to the tragic shootings and the response to it.
The commission, led by former chief justice of the Maine Supreme Judicial Court Daniel Wathen, is investigating potential missed opportunities to prevent the shootings. The shooter, Army reservist Robert Card, had a history of concerning behavior and had spent time in a psychiatric hospital following an altercation with fellow reserve members.
Governor Janet Mills and Attorney General Aaron Frey have expressed their support for granting the commission subpoena power, emphasizing the importance of transparency in the investigation. The commission’s goal is to follow the facts of the case and make the findings as accessible to the public as possible.
Members of the commission, including former chief forensic psychologist for the state Debra Baeder and former U.S. attorney for the District of Maine Paula Silsby, are committed to uncovering any overlooked red flags that may have contributed to the tragedy. They are also seeking to collaborate with law enforcement in their efforts to assess the situation comprehensively.
The commission plans to produce a written report within six months, aiming for a thorough and efficient investigation. The next steps include preparing legislation to grant the commission the power of subpoena, with the goal of having it considered at the beginning of the next legislative session.
As the commission continues its work, their focus remains on obtaining all necessary information to shed light on the events leading up to the mass shooting, honoring the memory of the victims, and ensuring that such tragedies are prevented in the future.