The teenage gunman who killed eight at a FedEx facility appears to have been obsessed with the children’s cartoon My Little Pony.
Brandon Hole’s Facebook page suggests he was a member of the “brony” internet community, the Wall Street Journal reports.
He wrote about meeting one of the characters in the afterlife an hour before going on his killing spree at his former workplace in Indianapolis, US, on Thursday.
The cultish “brony” group, a portmanteau of “bro” and “pony”, consists mostly of adult men who are fans of the animated television show.
Some are sexually attracted to the characters, who are female horses, and some members of the group have been linked with far-right ideology.
Hole, 19, reportedly wrote: “I hope that I can be with Applejack in the afterlife, my life has no meaning without her” in a now-deleted post at 10.19pm on Thursday.
The post included a photo of Applejack, a blonde pony who is a main character on the show.
The Wall Street Journal cited an internal Facebook memo they had seen that detailed Hole’s post.
“Brony online culture has displayed elements of far-right and white nationalist extremism,” the memo stated.
Facebook stopped short of saying Hole’s pony-love had anything to do with the shooting, writing in the memo there was no clear evidence it motivated the massacre.
Hole, a former employee of FedEx, opened fire in the facility before turning the gun on himself. His motives remain unclear.
Eight people were killed in the massacre, police said.
Five were taken to local hospitals and two others were treated at the scene and released.
Of the deceased, four were found in the parking lot and four inside the facility.
Fred Smith, the founder and chief executive of FedEx, confirmed on Friday that the eight killed were workers at the Indianapolis Ground facility.
In a message to employees, he said it would take some time to understand what happened in “this senseless act of violence.”