Speaking to The Lantern, his university paper in August, 18-year-old Abdul Razak Ali Artan, said he continuously complained about America’s treatment of Muslims to his mother.
In the article, Artan – a Somalian refugee – said: “If people look at me, a Muslim praying, I don’t know what they’re going to think, what’s going to happen.
“I am a Muslim, it’s not what the media portrays me to be.”
The piece, titled ‘Humans of Ohio State’, shed light on the third year logistics management student, who had recently transferred from Columbus State Community College.
Artan said his former college had plenty of prayer rooms for Muslim students, but he didn’t know where to pray on the large Ohio State campus.
Condemning the media’s portrayal of Muslims, he added: “It’s the media that puts the picture in their heads so they’re just going to have it and it’s going to make them feel uncomfortable.”
The Lantern republished Artan’s interview immediately after he launched his killing spree, posting it on their website during the 90 minutes the university was on lockdown while the student shooter was on the loose.
While the campus was on lockdown, its management office tweeted: “Run Hide Fight. Continue to shelter in place.”
Driving in a crazed state, Artan deliberately crashed into a crowd of students, mounted a curb and careered into them.
When the students went to check on him, he began stabbing them.
Jacob Bowers, an OSU sophomore, was sitting on a bench about 100 feet away when he noticed people running.
“Then I heard someone yell, “He”s got a knife.” And I saw a guy with a big-ass knife just chasing people around. When I saw that, I grabbed all my stuff and started running,” Bowers said.
Local Muslim leaders strongly condemned Artan’s attack.
Roula Allouch, national board chairman of the Council on American-Islamic Relations said: “As Ohioans, as Americans and as Muslims, we’re shocked by today’s senseless attack.”
During his time at College, Artan worked part time at a Home Depot.
His former student colleagues described him as “a nice, non-violent person” who “talked to everybody.”
Ohio police are now investigating.