Ok some quick followup. I have gone over many aspects of this story, but there is nothing obvious at this stage to make me think it was staged in anyway shape or form.
Was he provoked? I don't know enough about the behind the scenes, I do know from the articles that I read, he had lost his job, but a lot of people are losing their jobs, the gunman who killed 14 had also lost his job, but I have not had time to research that incident.
At this stage, it's hard to judge. Eg. I have come across a situation previously where they wanted the continued co-operation of a young man who was not co-operating. They encouraged those around him to make his life more difficult, including having his father call the police on him for a minor argument, something his father had never previously done. So though the possibility exists, until I can find more hard core details, I going to write this one as is.
My sympathies to the police and their families. It sounds like they were doing what his mother asked them to do, which was to remove him from the premises. I am not sure why after the initial shootings backup was not dispatched, and why a third officer was killed before the suspect was taken into custody.
For the suspect, based on what I have read, he really seems surprised by his actions, calling friends to say goodbye because he assumed he was going to die, calling the ex-girlfriend to say he still loved her, even thought they have a very turbulent past.
I have read many articles on this, visited the appropriate forums, and I don't see anything to make me think he was extremely provoked in this specific instant, but I can't fully rule out the possibility of minor provocations, over time that we were not aware of, that might even have contribute to some of his actions up to that point. I can't fully eliminate that possibility.
Based on the articles he was scared of gun laws being enacted, and losing rights, but these actions will unfortunately give others possible reasons to take away rights.
As you know I am against guns personally, but I advocate the rights of others to own them, but in a responsible fashion.
At this stage it's tragic what happened for all parties, and seems like it could have been avoided. I can not find anything in any of the research to suggest there was a specific reason for this, unless others can shed additional light on this event.
Pointless tragedy that could have been avoided. We have to remember that no matter what we believe, even if it turns out that the world is not the place you thought it was, nothing about the world has changed, except your awareness of it, and acting in an out of bounds fashion, will not help anyone. Calm, it's the only way true solutions can be found, in terrible times.