Kevin Downing spent 16 years ranting against the federal government, nursing a grudge after he lost his job. For years, he claimed that he was wrongly fired for confronting his bosses about a plan to build a new headquarters for the Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics. Downing told anyone who would listen that the federal government was wasting money and he insisted that he was a whistle blower that had been victimized. Then one day, he snapped. Downing walked into a federal office building and shot a security guard and then took his own life.
Downing had repeatedly appealed to his congressman and to local newspapers to consider his story. Rep. Bill Pascrell said he considered the man’s claims and actually thought he might actually be partially right in that he was fired unjustly. “We felt that this person had been given a raw deal, to put it mildly,” Pascrell said. “There was no excuse for it and he had been treated very badly.”
Though a lot of time has passed since Downing was fired, he was still campaigning to get his job back. Convinced he was now protected by legislation aimed at guarding federal whistleblowers, he started a petition and sought support from the National Taxpayers Union. Neighbors report that Downing was also dealing with some personal problems. His fiancé had recently died and he was facing a real possibility that he could lose his home.
So one day he walked into a federal building that housed an office for the Department of Labor and he lost it, gunning down an innocent security guard and then turning the gun on himself.
His friend, Rivka Glickman, said she was heartbroken to hear the news. “He flipped or something,” she said. “I feel he went through a terrible crisis because he was always a very well-mannered, calm person. Something made him snap.”
Idrissa Camara was the security guard on duty when Downing entered the building with a gun. He was killed instantly. Camara’s family is grieving his death and questioning why he was targeted. Originally from the Ivory Coast, Camara moved to America to seek a better life. “He just came here for the American dream,” his cousin said. “We are asking ourselves, ‘This is the American dream?’ Being killed in your job for nothing?”
Unfortunately, Camara is not the only person to be unfairly murdered this year. In fact, guns are expected to surpass car crashes as the leading cause of American deaths in 2015. When a loved one is murdered, it’s hard to figure out who is really at fault. In Camara’s case, the obvious answer is that Downing was the one responsible since he was holding the gun. But you have to also consider who sold him that gun and whether he would have ever used it to murder Camara if he was treated fairly by his employers. Sometimes a wrongful death is difficult to unravel.
That’s why you should seek the help of a wrongful death attorney in Tampa if you are ever faced with a tragedy like this one. When you unexpectedly lose a loved one, it can be hard to know what to do next. In many cases, loss of a family member will leave surviving dependents in a financial hardship. A Tampa wrongful death attorney can help you determine if there was negligence involved that contributed to your loved one’s death. You might have cause to file a wrongful death claim. Contact a Tampa wrongful death attorney today for a free consultation at 1-800-225-5564.