OLATHE, Kan. — A Kansas man accused of shooting two Indian immigrants and a third man at a bar, in what some believe was a hate crime, was always a drinker but became a “drunken mess” after his father died about 18 months ago, a longtime neighbor said Saturday.
Andy Berthelsen said his neighbor Adam Purinton, who is charged with murder and attempted murder in Wednesday night’s attack, was very close to his father, who died of pancreatic cancer.
He said in the past year, Purinton bounced from one menial job to the next and was sometimes drunk by mid-morning. But in the 15 years he’s lived across the street from Purinton in Olathe, Berthelsen said he’s never heard him make a racist remark or talk politics. He said he doesn’t believe the shooting stemmed from hatred, and that it likely resulted from Purinton’s physical and mental deterioration.