A U.S. soldier accused of wanting to commit a mass shooting after pledging loyalty to the Islamic State group believed the moon landing was faked, questioned the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and thought the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks were an inside job coordinated by the U.S. government, according to a former Army bunkmate.
Army Sgt. 1st Class Ikaika Kang was ordered held without bail in federal court in Honolulu Thursday after a brief detention hearing. Kang's court-appointed attorney Birney Bervar did not contest his client's detention but said after the hearing that he will ask for a mental health evaluation.
A "turning point" for Kang's mental state seems to be a 2011 deployment, Bervar said: "He's a decorated American soldier for 10 years, goes to Afghanistan and comes back and things start going off the rails."
Bervar said his client may suffer from service-related mental health issues of which the government was aware but neglected to treat.
"It looks like rather than helping him, the government exploited and took advantage of him," Bervar said.