Chandler gunman who barricaded himself in bakery had troubled past

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Nathan Daniel Griffis, 37 (Source: Chandler Police Department) Nathan Daniel Griffis, 37 (Source: Chandler Police Department)
CHANDLER, AZ (3TV/CBS 5/AP) -

We're now learning more about Nathan Griffis, 37,  the man involved in a 3-hour standoff with police Friday near Interstate 10 and Chandler Boulevard.

[MUGSHOT: Nathan Daniel Griffis]

Customers and business owners scrambled to safety after Griffis went on a bizarre crime spree then ended when Griffis shot himself.

Griffis died Saturday morning, according to police.

[READ MORE: Suspect involved in a standoff with Chandler police Friday has died]

Griffis reportedly set a room on fire at a Motel 8, then walked across the street to a bakery, where he pointed a gun at employees and told them to get out.

A few hours later, Griffis shot himself, police said.

[PHOTOS: Police situation in Chandler]

New details are now emerging about Griffis' past and what might have led to the chaos and confusion.

Griffis had a history of drug use and mental illness.

We have also learned Griffis was also wanted for questioning by Mesa police in an arson, burglary and vehicle theft case.

This case is also getting attention thanks to a long rant he posted on his Facebook page the day before the incident.

On Thursday, May 11, Griffis wrote:

"Goodbye, everyone. My life has taken a (drastic) change."

"I will no longer be on Facebook nor will I reside in Arizona anymore."

"There will be a select few of you that hear from me in the future."

Griffis then talked about his ongoing drug problem, writing:

"You don't just stop using a needle overnight after years of use."

"I don"t give an (expletive) who you tell what I did to anybody...don't (expletive) with me."

A few days earlier, Griffis wrote about his time in a mental hospital and talked about trying to kill himself.

The Facebook post said:

"Hey everyone. Update here. I'm out of the hospital and psych ward."

"I'm in a lot of pain but lucky to be alive."

"Part of me wanted to end it all, but it was a bit of my own stupidity and an accident."

Witnesses who saw Griffis Friday said he was acting unstable.

The last thing he wrote on Facebook was:

"Goodbye hahahahaha... my shoulder hurts."

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Jason Barry
Jason Barry has been reporting in the Valley since 1997.

Click to learn more about Jason.

Jason Barry

Jason Barry has been reporting in the Valley since 1997.

He is a nine-time Rocky Mountain Emmy Award winner who is best known for his weekly Dirty Dining reports, which highlight local restaurants with major health code violations.

Jason was born in Los Angeles and graduated from the University of Miami.

An avid sports fan, Jason follows the Diamondbacks, Cardinals and Suns with his wife, Karen, and son, Joshua.

His favorite stories to cover are the station’s Pay it Forward segments, which reward members of the community with $500 for going ‘above and beyond’ the call of duty to help others.

Jason, started his career at WBTW-TV in Florence, SC before moving to WALA-TV in Mobile, AL, was named the Associated Press Reporter of the Year in 2002.

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