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Gunman shot at Trump hotel was stripper, porn actor and big Melania fan

| Friday, May 18, 2018, 7:51 p.m.
Police respond to The Trump National Doral resort after reports of a shooting inside the resort Friday, May 18, 2018 in Doral, Fla.
Police respond to The Trump National Doral resort after reports of a shooting inside the resort Friday, May 18, 2018 in Doral, Fla.

MIAMI — Less than a year ago, South Africa native Jonathan Oddi proudly posed behind a backdrop of an American flag, touting his new citizenship. “God bless the USA finally an American!” he wrote on Instagram.

On Friday morning, he unfurled the American flag inside a South Florida hotel owned by the nation's president, then got into a firefight and chase with police while ranting about Donald Trump, Barack Obama and, bizarrely, rap mogul P. Diddy, according to law enforcement.

Investigators late Friday were still trying to unravel the motivations of Oddi, a 42-year-old fitness junkie and businessman who appeared to become unhinged while attacking the Trump National Doral Miami resort.

Oddi suffered police gunshots to the legs, and faces charges of attempted murder. Agents raided his nearby apartment to recover phones, electronics and other evidence that might reveal what led to the bizarre incident.

On social media, Oddi lists himself as a fitness instructor, real estate investor and manager at Pegasus, a business dealing in minerals and gemstones. He also had a very Miami side job — about five years ago, he was a regular stripper for Dancing Bear, a South Florida website that produced videos of raucous staged parties involving women performing sex acts on male dancers.

“He was pretty laid back,” said one former dancer who performed alongside him. “He was a pretty decent guy. No real signs of anger management.”

Oddi lived a few miles away at a rental complex on 53rd Street. He was born in South Africa and is of Italian heritage.

Oddi used to be married to a South Florida lawyer, but the couple divorced amicably in 2014. He had a girlfriend who was out of the country during the attack, sources told the Miami Herald.

His numerous online public postings provide few clues to his motive and offer mixed political leanings.

On Instagram, he posted a meme from Turning Point USA, a right-wing conservative group. The meme contrasts a U.S. soldier with NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who knelt during the national anthem to protest police brutality.

“colin worries he doesn't have a nfl career and kneels for popularity,” Oddi wrote in his Oct. 26 Instagram post.

A look at his private Instagram account reveals scores of posts, most of them screenshots of news stories. Among them, accounts of singer Chris Brown being accused of rape, federal authorities pushing the death penalty for opioid dealers, and the downfall of movie mogul Harvey Weinstein.

His other posts tout cashews as a natural anti-depressant, seek justice for abused puppies, and quote from figures such as rapper Notorious B.I.G. and Confucius.

He fawns over first lady Melania Trump: “#flotus rocks! She sets the example of mannerism. She counters Trumps aggressiveness,” he wrote in one post showing the first lady smiling in the White House.

Another post shows a Time magazine cover depicting Trump for a story about his troubles with porn star Stormy Daniels. “Reality is harsh,” Oddi wrote.

And in another post, Oddi blasts the United States for “giving $10.4 million every day” to Israel. “They have free healthcare and college. but we don't because we can't afford it!”

Oddi's record shows no arrests in Miami-Dade County.

Longtime friend Luis David Gonzalez was on his way to Oddi's home with eggs and coffee when he learned of the shooting. He and Oddi worked out together every day at the LA Fitness in Doral. Gonzalez said Oddi is a dancer who has a small dog named Popo.

“I just wanted to see if he was doing fine,” Gonzalez said. “I'm surprised and confused . I knew him 10 years. He's a good person. I'm very surprised he did this.”

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