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Digging deeper into a man's plot to kill local police officers

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Updated: 4/30/2013 6:58 pm
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Police say Les Cowan walked inside the Academy Sports store on Atlantic Boulevard with a loaded shotgun.  It was December 11, 2012.  His girlfriend, Tammy Gill, came with him.  She said they were there to buy ammo.

Police say Cowan was on a mission to kill.  But in an interview with JSO, Gill tells a detective she never thought Cowan would go through with it.

"I thought if I went in with him, he would calm down and he wouldn't do something stupid," said Gill.

[PHOTO GALLERY: EVIDENCE IN ACADEMY SPORTS SHOOTING]

She said the two went to the store moments after he forced her to send a threatening email that he wrote to her boss.  Action News obtained a copy of that email.  In it, Cowan threatens to kill the boss's family.

The JSO detective interviewing Gill the day of the shooting said, "This email is pretty disturbing."  Gill replied, "It is."  The detective went on to ask her, "You read this before you sent it?"  Gill responded, "I asked him not to send it."  The detective asked again, "Did you read it before you sent it?"  Gill admitted, "I read it."

The email then said, "I shall destroy the Atlantic Beach police and move on to the Neptune Beach police.  I shall kill everyone who stands in my way."

Again, Gill tells JSO she believed the threats were empty. 

Employees at Academy Sports sold the couple the ammo they came for, keeping Cowan calm, while another employee called police.  JSO met the couple outside.

They say Cowan and Gill led police on a short chase that ended in an exchange of gunfire.  Cowan was killed, ending what Gill described as his month-long descent into madness.

"I saw hate consume a man that I love," said Gill.  "And this is what it became."

The manifesto police say Cowan wrote started by saying, "In me flows the blood of ancient kinds and countless warriors.  Know for certain that you and all the wicked upon this planet are no longer welcome here."

Gill said that Cowan hated Christianity, possibly because his family was Christian and his family kept him away from his children.

"He started just hating everything and everybody," said Gill.  The woman also said her boyfriend wrote the email, but she admitted she sent it.  She said he made her do it, and that she didn't challenge him.

JSO asked her, "Did you like worship him?"  Gill replied, "No, I just loved him, that's all."

Gill is currently sitting in the Duval County Jail, charged with making threats, eluding police, and carrying a concealed weapon.  She's due in court again next month.
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amadeus - 9/21/2013 5:59 AM
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I don't understand the purpose of a copyright notice ("Copyright 2013 Cox Media Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.") that also happens to be right above a "Share" button. Tweeting and sharing on any number of social networks isn't broadcasting or distributing?
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