Mohammod Abdulazeez, the man who shot and killed five servicemen in Chattanooga last week, was following a radical American member of al Qaeda online, according to ABC News.
ABC News reported that the FBI found evidence that in 2013 Abdulazeez was following Anwar al-Awlaki, a high-profile American al Qaeda cleric and recruiter. Abdulazeez conducted research for militant Islamist "guidance" on committing violence, U.S. officials told ABC News. FBI agents found the evidence in a search of Abdulazeez's cell phone and online activity, according to ABC News.
There's still no evidence, though, that Abdulazeez was motivated by ISIS to commit the shootings last week. ISIS used to be an al Qaeda affiliate in Iraq, but the two groups split recently.
"I don't think that there is any evidence it was ISIL [ISIS]-inspired. He may have been seeking some religious guidance to conduct an act. He could readily find that anywhere online," a senior official briefed on the investigation told ABC News.
One of Abdulazeez's friends, James Petty, told ABC News that Abdulazeez had strong negative feelings about ISIS.
"He believed that ISIS was not a group to go towards" and did not think that "ISIS was even Islamic," Petty told ABC News.
FBI agents also found Abdulazeez's diary, which revealed his inner thoughts and depression. U.S. officials told ABC News that his diary revealed suicidal thoughts and "becoming a martyr." Those thoughts were recorded after Abdulazeez lost his job because of drug use.
Read more from the ABC News report
Read more about the attacks on Chattanooga military facilities