Navy Yard Gunman Practiced Shooting Days Before Rampage

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Navy Yard Shooter Aaron Alexis Picked Up a Gun From a Guard He Shot

A Defense Department official said that Alexis had "secret" security clearance granted in March 2008 and that level of security clearance lasts for 10 years. Secret is the lowest of the three security clearances a person can get.

Full coverage of the Washington DC Navy Yard shooting here.

As is customary, when he left the Navy in January 2011 with an honorable discharge he was able to carry over the clearance to the civilian world.

Alexis worked for Hewlett-Packard as an IT subcontractor for the Navy, the company said. He was an employee of a company called "The Experts" that refreshed equipment used on the Navy Marine Corps Intranet network.

"We can confirm that the suspect had been employed by The Experts for approximately six months over the last year, during which time we enlisted a service to perform two background checks and we confirmed twice through the Department of Defense his Secret government clearance," The Experts said in a statement today.

"The latest background check and security clearance confirmation were in late June of 2013 and revealed no issues other than one minor traffic violation," the company said.

The shooting was first reported at 8:15 a.m. Metropolitan Police Chief Cathy Lanier said officers were on the scene within two to three minutes of the first call.

She said that internal security had already engaged the shooter and victims were already down. An active shooter team was on the site within seven minutes and Alexis was killed in a gunfight with authorities.

The FBI is asking that anyone with information on Alexis call 1-800-CALL-FBI.

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