The 24-year-old suspect allegedly laid out his plans in a series of Telegram posts
Czech Police have named the perpetrator of a mass shooting that left 15 people dead in Prague on Thursday. The killer, identified by police as David K., a 24-year-old student, allegedly killed his father in his hometown of Kladno on Thursday before traveling to the Czech capital on a suicide mission.
Czech media later named the shooter as David Kozak and published his picture.
Police President Martin Vondrasek told reporters that Kozak made a number of social media posts prior to his rampage and was “inspired by a similar terrible event abroad,” without revealing further details. The killer was “saying that he wanted to kill himself,” Vondrasek added.
However, Czech media unearthed screenshots from a Telegram account apparently opened by Kozak earlier this month. In a Russian-language post on December 9, Kozak allegedly stated that he would use the platform as a “diary as I move towards [a] school shooting.” In a series of updates on December 10, the poster introduced himself as “David” and said that he “want[s] to do [a] school shooting and possibly suicide,” naming Russian school shooters Alina Afanaskina and Ilnaz Galyaviev as inspiring his killing spree.
🇨🇿‼️🚨 BREAKING: The shooter kept a diary and dreamed about a shooting!The shooter who opened fire in Prague and killed 10 people, David Kozak. He kept a diary in a telegram channel, in his own words he always dreamed of committing a mass murder, his inspirations were Ilyaz… https://t.co/CrYWz02Euipic.twitter.com/UDjwhiN6zJ
— Lord Bebo (@MyLordBebo) December 21, 2023
“I always wanted to kill, I thought I would become a maniac in the future,” the post read. “Then, when Ilnaz did the shooting, I realized that it was much more profitable to do mass murders than serial ones. Alina became the last point. It was as if she had come to my aid from heaven just in time.”
Kozak was a student at Charles University, police said. According to Czech media, he studied history and won a prize for his undergraduate thesis in 2018.
Police said that Kozak was “eliminated” at the university building where his rampage began. However, it is unclear whether he was struck by a police bullet or whether he turned his gun on himself, Vondrasek noted. Kozak had been spotted wielding a rifle on the roof of the building shortly before his death, and Prague Mayor Bohuslav Svoboda claimed that the shooter fell to his death from this perch.
Police said that Kozak legally owned multiple firearms. Gun ownership is common in the Czech Republic, and the country’s constitution guarantees the right to bear arms and use them in self-defense.
Prague’s Jan Palach Square, where the university building is located, will remain closed to the public until midnight as a police investigation continues.
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