NEWS
08/27/2015 14:47 EDT | Updated 08/27/2016 01:12 EDT

Virginia shooting: Vester Flanagan had been ordered to go to workplace counselling

The disgruntled former employee of a Virginia television station who gunned down two of his ex-colleagues on-air had been ordered to undergo workplace counselling because of his flagging performance, anger and inability to get along with fellow employees, the station manager of WDBJ says.

"We made it mandatory that he seek help from the Employee Assistance Program," said Jeff Marks, general manager of WDBJ, at a Thursday news conference in Roanoke.

Marks said Vester Flanagan, who also went by the name Bryce Williams, was ordered to undergo counselling because of his behaviour toward colleagues and his "performance issues."

He said Flanagan "annoyed" a lot of the people he worked with and after several confrontations with colleagues raised concerns to human resources and management about what he perceived as unfair treatment.

Flanagan fatally shot TV reporter Alison Parker, 24, and cameraman Adam Ward, 27, early Wednesday while they were filming a live interview with Vicki Gardner, the executive director of the local chamber of commerce. Gardner was also shot but survived her injuries and is recovering in hospital.

Flanagan fled the scene and died later in hospital from a self-inflicted gunshot a few hours after crashing his car on Interstate 66 while being chased by state troopers.

Flanagan had been an employee of the station from 2012 to 2013, when he was fired. 

He later filed a harassment complaint and a civil lawsuit against the station, accusing staff of making racist comments. his complaint was deemed unfounded by the Equal Employment opportunity Commission and the civil suit was dismissed, Marks said.