Thursday October 8th, 2015 7:45PM

Mother of Manhattan shooter speaks to NY Times

By Staff
NEW YORK - The mother of the gunman in the Empire State Building shooting says she doesn't blame police for killing him, but she still thinks of him as kind-hearted and caring.

Jeffrey Johnson's mother also told The New York Times on Monday that her son said his life was "diminished tenfold" after his beloved cat died.

The Times says she asked that her first name and the town in Georgia where she lives be withheld to protect her privacy. has confirmed that Johnson grew up in Gainesville and was a 1971 graduate of Gainesville High School. Comments on Facebook reflect the comments made by Johnson's mother, noting that Johnson was quiet and reserved and was a talented artist.

She says her son learned to be an expert marksman while serving in the Coast Guard.

She says the NYPD was justified in shooting her son because he killed somebody. But, she says, "for me, he hasn't changed."

Johnson fatally shot a co-worker this past Friday. He was in turn shot and killed by police.

The Associated Press contributed to this article.
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