The stranger delivered a rant filled with profanities and at least one racial epithet because he thought the family, including a wheelchair-bound woman, was laughing at him in the Norfolk airport on Aug. 4.
“It was a disturbing type of behavior,” Glynda Boyd told ABC News. “I felt fear. A sense of fear because it was off. He looked like he was puzzled, something was wrong. You could tell his behavior, something wasn’t right with him mentally.”
Boyd said the scary confrontation was triggered by an inside joke at Norfolk Airport among the family that included her brother and aunt. Her wheelchair-bound aunt Rosalind Baugh laughed loudly, which drew the attention of the man she is certain was Alexis, she said.
Alexis angrily approached the group, demanding to know why they were laughing at him. Things quickly escalated with Alexis screaming profanities and motioning at his side as though he were carrying a weapon.
Boyd said Alexis screamed numerous curses at the family standing no more than two feet from them and used the N-word. Both the family and Alexis are black. Boyd said when she saw Alexis’ picture on TV following the shooting, she screamed.
“I turned on the television and I saw his face on the news and I just screamed, ‘Oh my God, that’s him, oh my God,'” Boyd said. “And I just started screaming and I did not go to sleep. Did not sleep, couldn’t because it just kept playing back in my mind, my encounter with him and my family.”
Three days after the incident, Alexis filed a police report in Rhode Island, stating he had argued with a person at an airport in Virginia and that individual “sent three people to follow him” and that they were harassing him with a microwave machine.
Alexis, a 34-year-old former Navy reservist, opened fire Monday at the Navy Yard in Washington, D.C., killing 12 people and injuring eight others. Alexis’ past is filled with documented anger issues, outbursts and violence long before he walked into the Navy Yard complex.