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Man accused of killings at video tourney treated for mental illness: records

Court records obtained by The Associated Press show that a man accused of killing two people and then himself at a video gaming competition in Florida had been hospitalized for mental illness. | Will Dickey/The Florida Times-Union via AP

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Court records obtained by The Associated Press show that a man accused of killing two people and then himself at a video gaming competition in Florida had been hospitalized for mental illness.

Divorce filings from the parents of 24-year-old David Katz of Baltimore say that as a teenager he was twice hospitalized in psychiatric facilities and that he was prescribed anti-psychotic and anti-depressant medications.

The records show Katz’s parents disagreed deeply on how to care for their troubled son. Katz’s father claimed his estranged wife was exaggerating symptoms of mental illness as part of the couple’s long-running and acrimonious custody battle. They divorced in 2007.

Authorities say Katz killed two people and wounded nine others Sunday before fatally shooting himself at the “Madden NFL 19” tournament in Jacksonville.

A gaming rival of the man blamed for a deadly shooting rampage at a video game tournament says he’s baffled that anyone he had competed against online would resort to bloodshed.

Shay Kivlen of Seattle traveled to Jacksonville, Florida, for the weekend “Madden NFL 19” tournament. He was resting at his hotel Sunday when authorities say a gunman killed two people at the venue and wounded nine others before fatally shooting himself.

Authorities identified the shooter as David Katz of Baltimore. Kivlen said he’s heard plenty of rumors. A friend told him that he’d heard Katz was asking about Kivlen before the shootings.

Kivlen says gamers competing for cash feel pressure, but most still see it as a game.

He said: “In ‘Madden,’ you never get so mad at a loss that you would want to do that.”