Initial reports say that Long and two other people may have lured the police to the scene. They were not from Baton Rouge, but from Missouri.
Gavin Long, who is black, previously served as a data specialist in the Marine Corps. He legally changed his name to Cosmo Setepenra. The Dallas shooter, Micah Johnson, also served in the military.
Long was honorably discharged after achieving the rank of sergeant. He later became a life coach and self-styled ‘Alpha-preneur’ under the name of Cosmo Setepenra, CBS News reports.
Long’s last tweet:
Just bc you wake up every morning doesn't mean that you're living. And just bc you shed your physical body doesn't mean that you're dead.
— Convos With Cosmo (@ConvosWithCosmo) July 17, 2016
There are reports that Long has a connection to the Sovereign Citizens group. The Southern Poverty Law Center considers the Sovereign Citizens movement is “rooted in racism and anti-Semitism, though most sovereigns, many of whom are African American, are unaware of their beliefs’ origins.”
In the early 1980s, the sovereign citizens movement mostly attracted white supremacists and anti-Semites, mainly because sovereign theories originated in groups that saw Jews as working behind the scenes to manipulate financial institutions and control the government. Most early sovereigns, and some of those who are still on the scene, believed that being white was a prerequisite to becoming a sovereign citizen. They argued that the 14th Amendment to the Constitution, which guaranteed citizenship to African Americans and everyone else born on U.S. soil, also made black Americans permanently subject to federal and state governments, unlike themselves.