Shooter At FRC Charged, Tied To Local Gay Community | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

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Shooter At FRC Charged, Tied To Local Gay Community

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The man police say shot and wounded a security guard at a conservative Christian lobbying group in Washington was charged Thursday after appearing in court. A judge ordered 28-year-old Floyd Lee Corkins II held without bond.

On Wednesday morning, a man, later identified as 28-year-old Floyd Lee Corkins II, walked into the lobby of the Family Research Council building at 801 G Street NW. He reportedly made a reference about the policies of the FRC, a conservative think tank active in the opposition of abortion and gay marriage, before shooting the security guard.

Corkins was subdued by the guard before being taken into the custody by the FBI. The guard was transportated to the hospital, where is expected to recover.

On Thursday morning, it was revealed that Corkins had volunteered for a few months at the D.C. Center for the LGBT community.

Posted on the front door of the center, which was closed this morning, was the following statement:

"I was shocked to hear that someone who volunteered at this center could be the cause of such senseless violence. No matter the circumstances, we condemn this violence in the strongest possible terms. We hope for a full and speedy recovery for the victims, and our thoughts are with him and his family." The message was signed by David Mariner with the center.

Tony Perkins, President of the Family Research Council, says the suspect was "given a license" to shoot the unarmed security guard by organizations such as the Southern Poverty Law Center. The center describes the Family Research Council as a hate group and says it defames gays and lesbians.

In a written statement, Mark Potok, Senior Fellow of the Southern Poverty Law Center, calls Perkins' statement "outrageous." Potok says the Center has criticized all those who endorse such violence, whether on the political left or the political right.

Corkins may face hate crime charges and even federal terrorism charges if authorities determine the incident at the FRC was motivated by Corkins' opposition to the FRC's stance against same-sex marriage. The charges could carry a sentence of up to 30 years.

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