The tragedy at Cedar Rapids Jefferson took a horrifying turn Monday afternoon as discovery of the victim’s ghoulish YouTube channel spread across social media. At the time of this writing the mentioned YouTube account remains active and provides startling insight into what the victim’s mentality may have been in the days and months leading to the horrible events last Friday.
Concerned parents have accused traditional media in Cedar Rapids, specifically KCRG News, of not reporting that Jefferson may have narrowly avoided a mass shooting event.
On Thursday a video was uploaded of the victim walking through the busy halls of Jefferson High School with school in session. It served as a stark contrast to previous content from the user.
The victim has several video game clips uploaded on the account that portray simulated school shootings and other acts of mass murder. Supportive viewers often complimented the minor on the realism of his virtual killing in the comment section.
Most of the 17 videos uploaded on the account are shot from the perspective of a gunman, running through an academic setting and killing unarmed people. The suicide victim was an avid video gamer having racked up well over 1,000 gaming hours in the Steam Community.
Other viewers of the YouTube channel expressed concern when the typically video game oriented theme, was replaced by a real-world first-person walk through of Jefferson on Thursday.
“Don’t do stupid things!” commented one subscriber.
The YouTube user, identified by peers as the suicide victim, frequently interacted with other user accounts that mimicked the likeness of Columbine shooter Dylan Kleblod. One of the uploads is a computer mod of Columbine on 4/20/99 that allowed the player to simulate the massacre like a historical event.
The account also features reenactment video of the Columbine murders set to heavy metal. It appears the suicide victim was part of a semi-active online community that glorifies school shootings and those that commit them.
“Let’s stop pretending. Let’s focus on the truth. This child had intentions far greater than to harm himself. He wanted Jefferson to become the next Columbine. His plan did not work. This is sickening.” said Mandy Rose, who has a younger brother at the school.
Parents at Cedar Rapids Jefferson are asking…was anyone at the school aware of the YouTube account prior to this weekend?
Video was first uploaded under the user name 10 months ago, with each subsequent clip containing violent imagery mimicking past mass shootings. The profile picture associated with the YouTube account is of Virginia Tech mass murderer Seung-Hui Cho. Anonymous users, purportedly Jefferson students, frequently interacted with the account before Friday and continue to use it as a forum.
Usually….law enforcement prompts YouTube to shut down similar accounts following a school shooting, though in this circumstance it seems no one has taken that step. The Cedar Rapids Police and once again…the school district…appear to be asleep at the wheel.
Parents want to know. Did Jefferson escape an even bigger tragedy?
“Tell parents the truth. Stop lying,” said Mandy Rose.