Father of Hot Yoga capturing sufferer Maura Binkley addresses the gang at halftime of the FSU-UF basketball recreation.
Wayne McGahee III, Tallahassee Democrat

The yoga studio gunman arrived in Tallahassee on Halloween, two days before he would randomly open fire and kill two women and injure hearth different individuals.

But why the 40-year-old army veteran got here to Tallahassee armed with a legally bought 9mm handgun, purchased in July, why he focused this particular studio or anybody within the class is one thing that Tallahassee Police Chief Michael DeLeo is aware of will take months to decipher. 

As investigators wade via a rising variety of private and professional paperwork present in his automotive and his residence in Deltona, they’ve narrowed in on Scott Beierle’s troubled past. That consists of his said hatred of girls and his historical past of weird conduct and groping ladies.

But they’ve but to pin down a motive or a connection to the Hot Yoga studio on Bradford Road or anybody who was within the 5:30 p.m. class, stated DeLeo.

Beierle arrived in Tallahassee and checked into the Suburban Extended Stay Hotel on Silver Slipper Lane on Wednesday, Oct. 31. What he did between then and the Friday night time capturing is a spotlight for TPD.

“We’re all very painfully conscious of his motion on Nov. 2,” DeLeo stated throughout a briefing on Friday. “So we’re actually making an attempt to determine what he did particularly on the primary when he had a full day to himself and determine what his actions have been.


Show Thumbnails

Show Captions

“The huge query for everyone is figuring out what’s his link to the studio, or a few of the individuals who have been there. That’s a reasonably complete record of steps to be sure that we don’t depart any stone unturned.”

Beierle entered the yoga studio posing as a buyer and was one of many final individuals to signal into the category. He started capturing virtually instantly after the category started.

Investigators have interviewed greater than 100 witnesses, shut acquaintances and household of the victims and the attacker and at the moment are documenting an in depth catalog of paperwork and digital knowledge the disgraced substitute instructor left behind. They have combed by way of the four,00zero or so digital invitations and schedules of the Hot Yoga studio wanting, unsuccessfully, for connections.

Hundreds of pages of paperwork courting way back to 10 to 15 years have been recovered from his pink Chevrolet Sonic that remained on the scene of the capturing. They additionally recovered paperwork from his lodge room, which have been linked to the capturing, DeLeo stated. With the assistance of the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office, which served a search warrant at his Deltona home the night time of the capturing, extra evidentiary paperwork have been recovered.

DeLeo stated Beierle carried with him the paperwork secured from his automotive. A laptop computer with a 500-gigabyte arduous drive was discovered, which might take as much as every week to course of. Additional digital storage units have been being analyzed. 

“He was certainly prolific in his use of written type documents as well as using video and digital storage and media devices to create records for himself and his dealings,” DeLeo stated. “Each file in there we will touch and review.”

DeLeo stated most of the paperwork have been up to date. As of Friday, none of them amounted to a confession or pointed on to a cause for the capturing.

“There’s certainly a lot of documents that demonstrate his feelings and his anger and his rage,” DeLeo stated. “There’s no confession, proclamation or ‘I’m making my statement to the world’, that we can say is specifically linked.”

Ammunition and different firearms, all legally bought, have been additionally recovered from his residence. The handgun used Friday was bought in July. Beierle didn’t have a hid weapons allow.


Show Thumbnails

Show Captions

Warning indicators:

In addition, investigators have subpoenaed data for his social media, e mail, web site, telephone, funds and his Department of Veteran Affairs paperwork, which can include details about Beierle’s referral to or looking for of psychological health assist.

Accusations of Beierle’s weird conduct towards ladies go way back to highschool, DeLeo stated. He graduated from Vestal High School in New York in 1997.

“We do know there were different allegations about his behavior dating back to (high school) in relation to young women and stalking and groping allegations,” DeLeo stated.

Beierle’s on-line presence reeked of his hostility. He lashed out at ladies, bragging on-line in YouTube movies and on his web site about his hatred for them. He additionally made racist and homophobic feedback elsewhere.

There are snippets detailing love misplaced, betrayal and creating a jail for ladies in his basement. Beierle mentions that he was ordered to see a psychiatrist on 4 events however by no means went.

The two individuals he fatally wounded within the yoga class have been ladies, 21-year-old Maura Binkley, and  61-year-old Dr. Nancy Van Vessem. Four of the 5 wounded victims are feminine.  

Beierle enlisted within the U.S. Army in 2008. He resigned in 2010 amid an lively investigation and before potential sanctions for inappropriate contact with ladies might be leveled. He purchased his first firearm in 2009, whereas nonetheless in uniform.

He was fired as a Volusia County substitute instructor in May after allegations he touched a feminine scholar. Before that, he was fired instead in Leon County in spring 2015 after it was found he was taking a look at pornography in school.  

Beierle was arrested twice, in 2012 and 2016, for grabbing the buttocks of younger ladies on the Florida State University campus, the place he earned two grasp’s levels, and at his house complicated, in line with Leon County courtroom data. In each of the instances, prosecutors finally dropped the fees.

DeLeo hoped that what investigators discover amongst Beierle’s paperwork and writings will assist to make sense of why he returned to Tallahassee to prey on harmless individuals.


Florida State University holds a vigil on campus for Hot Yoga Tallahassee capturing victims on Sunday, Nov. four, 2018.
Tallahassee Democrat

A group responds: 

He lauded first responders and Joshua Quick, one of the victims who fought back after Beierle started firing.

“Mr. Quick’s actions undoubtedly saved lives that night. By choosing to fight, he helped disrupt the attack on everybody in the studio,” DeLeo stated. “There’s no words strong enough to command his courage in that situation.”

Providing solutions to the group, the victims and their households are paramount for investigators, he added.

“Our first priority is to get answers for Maura Binkley’s family and Nancy Van Vessem’s family and get them that closure. That’s also very important for us to get that for our community,” he stated.

“It’s scary when you see something like this when it touches us. We just watched what happened two nights ago in California and what happened two weeks ago in Pittsburgh and they’re asking the same questions that we are. How did that happen here?”

Contact Karl Etters at or @KarlEtters on Twitter.


Read or Share this story: