Milwaukee police have arrested Misty Cook, the ex-girlfriend of the Sikh temple shooter Wade Michael Page, after they found a gun in her Milwaukee home.
Cook lived with Page up until June of this year and was involved with him in the white supremacist movement, according to the Ant-Defamation League, which monitors these groups. The ADL has pictures of Cook, 31, wearing a t-shirt and standing behind a banner bearing the name of one of the racist groups, Volksfront.
Officials hope that Cook will be able to fill in the many blanks surrounding the eruption that led him to shoot and kill six people at the Sikh temple, where Page, 40, was eventually killed himself. Cook was convicted in 2002 for eluding a traffic officer and fleeing, which meant she was a felon and prohibited from having a gun.
“In a joint investigation with the FBI, the South Milwaukee Police Department has arrested Misty Cook on the crime of felon in possession of a firearm. Charges will be sought through the Milwaukee County District Attorney’s Office,” Milwaukee police said in a statement yesterday after her arrest.
Though from the outside it doesn’t look like Cook was involved in the shooting, that clearly will be a line of questioning pursued by authorities in their interrogations of Cook.
Cook’s mother said their relationship ended in June.
“She had put his stuff in the basement and told him if he needed anything else just to get it out of the basement, she really didn’t want him around,” Bernie O’Dea, Cook’s mother, told ABC News.
Two of Cook’s neighbors, Sharon and Terry Page, told ABC that Cook and Wade moved in to the apartment March 1, but Wade moved out in the middle of June. After that point, Wade virtually disappeared—or at least that’s what Cook told Sharon Page.
“She told us that for six weeks she hadn’t heard anything of him,” Page said. “That would have been about the time after he left, so she must have gotten a hold of a co-worker and said he hadn’t been at work for three weeks. She said he kind of just dropped off the face of the earth.”
A University of Nebraska criminology professor, Pete Simi, was familiar with Page from a project he was doing a decade ago researching white supremacists. Simi interviewed Page as part of his project.
“When he joined his first white power music band, this really changed his life,” he said, adding that Page told him his neo-Nazi beliefs came after serving in the Army.
“He [Page] saw and experienced things that angered him, convinced him whites were victimized,” Simi said.
Simi said Page was an excessive drinker—his drinking led to his discharge from the Army in 1998 when he got drunk on duty—and Simi said Page never felt comfortable talking about his parent’s divorce or his mother, who died when he was young.