Anthony Dwayne McRae, 43, was identified as the lone suspect in a Monday night shooting at Michigan State University that left three students dead and five others injured.
Five MSU students remain hospitalized from unspecified injuries sustained in the shootings at two MSU buildings. A Sparrow Hospital spokesperson said on Tuesday night that the five remain in critical condition.
McRae, a Lansing resident, shot himself after being confronted by police after responding to a caller tip early Tuesday.
After McRae killed himself, police found a note in McRae’s pocket that “indicated threats” to two public schools in Ewing, New Jersey, the hometown of McRae’s deceased mother and residence of surviving relatives. The Ewing PD investigation discovered McRae had a history of mental problems.
McRae lived in a 960-foot wood frame house on the northern part of Lansing that was owned by Michael and Linda McRae. Linda McRae, Anthony McRae’s mother, died in 2020. Mike and Linda were known as scrappers who scoured the neighborhood in a wood-paneled truck picking up metal.
A next door neighbor, Megan Bender, said McRae had moved into the small house with his father about a year ago. Bender described Mike, the shooter’s father, as a “really awesome guy” who is retired from General Motors, and is a Christian who went to church every Sunday. Mike was known as “Happy” in the neighborhood, and was a “joy” of a person.
Another neighbor said Anthony “might have had mental problems.”
Mike McRae said his son turned “bitter” after the death of his mother. “He was grieving his mom. He wouldn’t let it go. He got bitter, bitter and bitter,” Mike McRae said. “His mom died, and he just started getting evil and mean. He didn’t care about anything anymore.”
His older brother, Michael McRae, said the younger McRae was definitely a loner who secluded himself.
In 2019, McRae faced a charge for illegally carrying a concealed weapon — a felony that includes a lifetime ban on weapons possession — but he was allowed to plead guilty to a misdemeanor and the charge was dismissed.
The plea deal was offered under an Ingham County Prosecutor who had pledged to limit the use of felony firearms charges, saying they disproportionately affect Black residents.
McRae had several run-ins with local police for speeding, driving without insurance and other motor vehicle offenses. He also had a string of debts that prompted court-ordered collections between 2005 and 2010.
The Victims of Anthony McRae
Among eight people shot on Monday night, three students died.
Alexandria Verner, 20, was a junior at MSU studying integrated biology and anthropology. She graduated from Clawson High School, where she was a triple threat, playing volleyball, softball and basketball. One former classmate remembered Verner as the “good girl” who kept “everyone in check” when “they were doing stupid stuff.”
Arielle Anderson, 19, of Harper Woods, was a 2021 graduate of Grosse Pointe North High School, and as an MSU sophomore, was aspiring to be a doctor. Anderson was devoted to a special aunt, who has special needs and is nonverbal. Her family said Arielle enjoyed spending time with friends, studying, cooking and movie nights.
“Driven by her aspiration to tend to the health and welfare of others as a surgeon, she was working diligently to graduate from Michigan State University early to achieve her goals as quickly as possible. As an angel here on Earth, Arielle was sweet and loving with an infectious smile that was very contagious.”
Brian Fraser, 20, graduated from Grosse Pointe South and was studying business and economics at MSU. Brian was president of the MSU Chapter of Phi Delta Theta. A longtime friend said Brian was a “great dude” and a gentleman who “cared about his friends a lot. Like the best friend I could ever ask for, honestly.” Brian played lacrosse and had an infectious smile.