Nashville Mayor Freddie O'Connell has ordered an investigation after conservative media personality Steven Crowder released what he said were documents from the Covenant School shooter online Monday.
“I have directed Wally Dietz, Metro’s Law Director, to initiate an investigation into how these images could have been released," O'Connell said in a statement. "That investigation may involve local, state, and federal authorities. I am deeply concerned with the safety, security, and well-being of the Covenant families and all Nashvillians who are grieving.
Dietz said Monday that he couldn't confirm or deny the authenticity of the documents because of pending litigation, the Tennessean reports.
The Metro Nashville Police Department released a statement late Monday afternoon, saying the images were not affiliated with its investigation. The agency also confirmed it is cooperating with Metro legal as it investigates how the documents were released.
In a video posted Monday to YouTube, Crowder said the manifesto was leaked and shared screenshots of portions of the document, which was believed to be the work of Audrey Hale, 28, whom authorities identified as the shooter. They also said Hale, who died at the scene, once attended the school, Newsweek reports.
The National Desk reports it has verified the authenticity of the leaked images through its Nashville affiliate, FOX 17 News.
Audrey Hale, 28, killed six people, including three students, after breaking into The Covenant School in March. Hale, a transgender man who reportedly also went by the name "Aiden," was previously a student at the school.
In addition to using a racial slur toward white people for the school’s students and complaining of their wealth, the manifesto includes a step-by-step itinerary for what the killer called “Death Day.” The itinerary includes everything from "getting dressed" and "eat breakfast" to "prepare for attack" and "time 2 die."
The manifesto has not been officially released by law enforcement. Some news agencies have sued for access. The school and Covenant families are intervening in the lawsuit and seeking to prevent the city from releasing the records. The case remains pending in court.