Could this action have been stopped before it started. Should authorities have known beforehand what an individual like this could do. Is there a profile or tell tale signs that authorities should have picked up on? The answer is yes.
Over ten years ago a US Intelligence agency report on the profile of potential terrorist (violent extremists) was issued that stated in part;
"Based on a variety of reporting - including a preliminary analysis of a small sample of US converts to Islam who become associated with extremist violence...we assess.. Some individuals, particularly those who convert in prison, may be attracted directly to jihadi violence at the outset of their conversion for opportunistic rather than ideological reasons. For this group, jihad represents a convenient outlet for aggressive behavior."
The report goes on to say: "In an apparent play on this psychological vulnerability...extremist groups are actively recruiting prisoners…"