This timeline of the life of John Russell Houser is based on police statements, court records and Associated Press interviews. Police say Houser killed two people and wounded nine others inside a Lafayette, Louisiana, movie theater before fatally shooting himself as police approached.
November 22, 1955 – John Russell Houser is born, son of a longtime tax commissioner in Columbus, Georgia.
December 3, 1983 – Houser weds Kellie Maddox.
1988 – Houser graduates from Columbus State University in Columbus, Georgia, with an accounting degree.
August 1989 – Houser is indicted on an arson charge for allegedly trying to hire a man to burn down the office of a lawyer who represented adult theaters.
September 25, 1989 – Georgia judge in arson case orders mental evaluation for Houser. Court records don’t show any evaluation results, nor do they indicate how the case was resolved.
Early 1990s – Houser repeatedly appears on NBC TV affiliate’s call-in show in Columbus, Georgia, where he provokes callers by advocating violence against abortion providers and opposing women in the workplace.
Fall 1994 – Houser enrolls in law school at Faulkner University in Montgomery, Alabama.
1996 – Houser briefly runs for tax commissioner, the office once held by his father, before dropping out of the race.
Spring 1998 – Houser graduates from law school, but never takes Alabama state bar exam.
April 2001 – City council in LaGrange, Ga., revokes Houser’s liquor license for Rusty’ Buckhead Pub after his fifth conviction in a year for selling alcohol to minors. Houser protests by hoisting a banner including a Nazi swastika.
October 23, 2005 – Domestic violence complaint filed against Houser in Phenix City, Alabama. He was never prosecuted.
2006 – Alabama sheriff refuses Houser’s request for a concealed weapons permit, citing the arson arrest and domestic violence complaints.
April 21, 2008 – Houser shows up at daughter’s workplace opposing her upcoming marriage. Police in Carrollton, Georgia, question Houser after receiving call about him being mentally disturbed at the home of his wife’s aunt.
April 22, 2008 – Probate judge agrees to request by Houser’s wife, daughter and others for an involuntary mental commitment, claiming Houser is a danger to himself and others, has a history of manic depression and bi-polar disorder, and has committed family violence.
April 23, 2008 – Houser is involuntarily committed to West Central Regional Hospital in Columbus, Georgia. It’s unclear how long he remains there.
April 24, 2008 – Georgia judge signs order barring Houser from getting near family.
December 23, 2012 – Houser and wife separate.
February 2014 – Houser purchases gun used in Louisiana theater shooting at a pawn shop in Phenix City, Alabama.
March 14, 2014 – Court document is filed to evict House from his longtime home in Phenix City, Alabama.
May 5, 2014 – Judge signs order evicting Houser from the home. He tampers with gas lines, pours concrete in the plumbing and glues the fixtures, but no charges are filed.
October 2014 – Houser shows up on social media spending time with a friend in Dayton, Ohio, playing golf.
March 24, 2015 – Kellie Houser files for divorce, saying their relationship is irretrievably broken and Houser’s whereabouts are unknown.
March 31, 2015 – Kellie Houser says her estranged husband calls, threatens her, and then threatens to kill himself outside his mother’s retirement community if she didn’t give him money. Police say Houser’s mother gave him $5,000, to help him get back on his feet.
Early July 2015 – Houser rents a room at a Motel 6 in Lafayette, Louisiana.
July 23, 2015 – Houser kills himself after firing on the audience during a screening of “Trainwreck.”
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