Nashville shooting suspect’s mother urged for gun control after past shootings, old Facebook posts reveal

Norma Fort Hale, the mother of alleged Nashville mass school shooter Audrey Hale, previously posted on social media after school shootings and called for more gun control.

Ms Hale, whose social media profile lists her as an employee of a Nashville-based chapel, shared links on Facebook to a Sandy Hook Promise petition to “keep guns out of schools,” calling the pledge “so important”.

The posts were seen by The Independent before they appear to have been taken down.

The Independent was not able to reach Ms Hale for comment. A number linked to her name via public records appears to have been disconnected.

Ms Hale appears to have confirmed that Audrey was involved in the shooting.

“It’s very difficult now, we ask for privacy,” she told ABC News. “I really can’t talk right now, I think I lost my daughter today.”

Police have identified the suspected shooter by their name at birth; Hale reportedly was a transgender man who used he/him pronouns, though law enforcement officials initially described the suspect as a woman in the aftermath of the shooting. Police did not provide another name but on the suspect’s social media accounts they refer to themselves as Aiden.

Audrey Hale is accused of killing six people – three adults and three students – at the Covenant School, a private Christian elementary school in Nashville.

Police say Hale, who is from Nashvile and previously attended Covenant, was armed with multiple assault-style weapons and forced his way into the school.

The 28-year-old left behind a “manifesto,” as well as apparent research about which sites to target for a shooting, police said, though a motive has not been publicly disclosed. Neighbours described Hale, whose LinkedIn describes a series of classes and jobs in the graphic design industry, as a normal, “quiet” person, from a family without any apparent interest in guns.

“If I had to imagine, Audrey’s parents are probably just as shocked as everybody in the neighborhood is…It just doesn’t seem real,” Sean Brashears told The Daily Beast. “There’s nothing that would have led me to believe that she was capable of such a thing or that she or anybody in that family would have access to, much less ever used, a gun. They just don’t seem like the family that, like, is around guns. They’re not talking about going to a gun range or they’re not going hunting.”