The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Report: Library shooter took guns from dad's safe

Jouett family releases statement


August 31, 2017

Tony Bullocks

Nathaniel Jouett is led away by police Monday at the Clovis-Carver Public Library.

CLOVIS — Two guns connected to Monday’s deadly library shooting came from the home safe of Nathaniel Jouett’s father, according to court documents filed Wednesday in Clovis’ district court.

Jouett, 16, told police he had “been mad at everyone since he got kicked out of school last year,” and had contemplated Monday’s shooting “for a long while.”

He said he “wanted to shoot the school up and then kill himself,” but ended up in the Clovis-Carver Public Library, “because he was angry and was either going to kill himself or a bunch of people,” the records show.

Clovis schools Superintendent Jody Balch declined to discuss Jouett’s school discipline record, citing privacy laws.

He said he was not aware of any threats being made against any of the schools on Monday or last week.

Jouett’s attorney, Chandler Blair, did not immediately return calls seeking comment on Wednesday.

Suicide notes found in room

A search warrant executed Monday after the shooting found a bag containing suicide notes and other notes in a desk drawer in Jouett’s room at his Oak Street home, as well as numerous guns in his father’s safe and ammunition in other parts of the house.

Records show Chris Jouett, the teen’s father, called police at 4:29 p.m. Monday to report his son was not home and two guns were missing from the home safe.

The Clovis High School sophomore was arrested following a 4:13 p.m. report to police of an active-shooter situation. Officers found him inside the Clovis-Carver Public Library, “standing by the information kiosk with his hands over his head,” with a loaded large caliber handgun on a nearby shelf.

He stated “Here I am,” as police entered the building, records show. Police handcuffed him and brought him directly into custody.

A black camera bag containing a second handgun, additional ammunition and a black plastic holster were also found inside the library.

Court records do not address the number of shots fired inside the library or detail how library workers Krissie Carter and Wanda Walters were killed.

Police also have not said how long the violence lasted, though the first call for help was received at 4:13 p.m. and ambulances began taking victims to the hospital 12 minutes later.

Eyewitnesses have estimated 30 shots or more were fired by the lone shooter.

Four people injured in the shootings were expected to recover, police said on Tuesday.

Shooting planned ‘for a long while’

“According to Nathan, everyone hates him and no one likes him,” Police Detective Ricky Smith wrote about his interview with Jouett immediately following the shooting. “He said he was a born-again Christian for about a month, but he has been thinking about this for a long while.”

Jouett told police he “didn’t know anyone at the library,” and “didn’t shoot at anyone in particular.”

He told police he didn’t know how he picked the library — he walked in, used the bathroom “and when he came out he started shooting into the library and yelling.”

A photo posted to Jouett’s Snapchat account at 4:10 p.m. Monday may have been taken in the library’s bathroom.

Asked what he was thinking at the time of the shooting, Jouett told the officer, “I was mad.”

He said he had “been thinking bad things for a while” and “knew it was wrong,” but “didn’t tell anyone about these thoughts because they have their own problems.”

A photo posted to Jouett's Snapchat account at 4:10 p.m. Monday may have been taken in the library's bathroom.

“He couldn’t say these things to his family, his girlfriend or his friends from church,” the officer wrote.

Suspect’s father: ‘We are deeply saddened’

Chris Jouett on Wednesday issued the following written statement on behalf of the family:

“As citizens of Clovis we are deeply saddened by this tragedy, these are our friends and neighbors and we are heartbroken right now for their loss. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all those affected.

“As parents this is something you never expect, Nathaniel is a loving son to us, a wonderful brother to his siblings, and a caring member of our family.

“As a family we are trying to process what has happened, we are saddened and heartbroken for everyone affected. At this time we would like to ask for space for our family and our community to cope with this terrible tragedy.”


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