Updated Tuesday, April 24, 2018, 3 p.m. EDT: A $2 million bond set for accused Waffle House shooter Travis Reinking has been revoked by a Tennessee judge. CNN reports that the order was signed by Tennessee state Judge Michael Mondelli today. No reason was given for revoking the bond, which was set Monday after authorities arrested the alleged gunman. Reinking was booked on four counts of criminal homicide, with a $500,000 bond for each of the victims.
Travis Reinking, a 29-year-old man accused of killing four people at a Nashville, Tenn., Waffle House on Sunday, was charged with four counts of criminal homicide Monday after being taken into custody earlier that day. He’s also being held on $2 million bail, WGN-TV reports.
But how exactly did the alleged gunman, who recent reports show had a series of run-ins with local and national law enforcement dating back to 2014, get his hands on an AR-15 that had been confiscated from him?
The answer is frustratingly simple: According to authorities, Reinking’s father, Jeffrey Reinking, to whom Travis’ guns had been transferred, simply gave his son his weapons back.
According to the New York Times, after a July 2017 incident in which Travis was grabbed by the Secret Service after he tried to run up on the White House grounds, Illinois police hand-delivered a statement to him and his father officially revoking Travis’ Firearm Owners Identification card, or FOID, which the state of Illinois mandates for anyone who wants to possess a firearm.
During that August 2017 encounter, Travis turned over the card to authorities and “helped the police retrieve all of his weapons and ammunition, which were handed over to Jeffrey Ranking,” the Times notes.
According to the police report, “Jeffrey was advised that he needed to keep the weapons secure and away from Travis. Jeffrey stated he would comply.”
Now police are investigating Jeffrey Reinking to determine how Travis got access to at least one of those weapons—the rifle reportedly used to massacre four people on Sunday. Travis was also found with a loaded handgun in his backpack when authorities apprehended him Monday.
George Mocsary, an assistant professor at the Southern Illinois University School of Law, told BuzzFeed News that, if found guilty of transferring firearms back to his son, the elder Reinking could face one to three years in prison.
How Travis Reinking wasn’t in some form of custody, despite his numerous run-ins and record of hostile behavior toward police, as Damon Young documented for The Root, beggars belief.
Starting in 2014, Reinking’s family—including his father, mother and grandmother—told police that he was having delusions. In 2016, cops were called on him after his family reported that he had talked of committing suicide; he also owned firearms. During the interaction, Reinking told cops that Taylor Swift hd stalked him and hacked into his Netflix account.
In 2017, Reinking’s interactions with law enforcement escalated: With an AR-15 in the trunk of his car, he exposed himself at a public pool. He was also arrested in Washington, D.C., later that year, after attempting to force his way onto White House grounds, prompting the FBI to investigate him.
For that offense, Travis Reinking was ordered to serve 32 hours of community service at a Baptist church.
And just last week in Nashville, where he had recently moved to work in construction, he stole a BMW after posing as a customer at a local dealership. He managed to evade authorities because Nashville police gave up on the chase, citing the fact that it was rush hour.
Reinking, who is white, stands accused of killing Akilah Dasilva, 23; DeEbony Groves, 21; Joe R. Perez, 20; and Taurean C. Sanderlin, 29. While all four victims were either African American or Latinx, Nashville Mayor David Briley says he has no reason to believe that their deaths were racially motivated, according to the Times.