Police: Gunman killed 6 in Santa Monica shootings

A gunman with an assault-style rifle killed at least six people in Santa Monica on Friday before police shot him to death in a gunfight in the Santa Monica College library, authorities said.
AP Wire
Jun 7, 2013

Santa Monica Police Chief Jacqueline Seabrooks told reporters the rampage began at a house in the coastal city before the gunman, dressed all in black, made his way to Santa Monica College.

Seabrooks said he killed two people in the house, which caught fire, two more people as he moved several blocks toward the campus, and then two more on campus.

He entered the library and fired on other people but didn't hit them, Seabrooks said.

Several students in the library reported hearing gunfire, and one witness said he heard a woman scream.

"The officers came in and directly engaged the suspect and he was shot and killed on the scene," Seabrooks said.

She identified the gunman as 25 to 30 years old and dressed all in black, wearing what appeared to be a ballistic jacket.

The campus was searched for a second shooter, and a man dressed entirely in black, with the words "Life is a Gamble" on the back of his sweatshirt, was seen being taken into custody by law enforcement officers. He did not appear to be wounded.

"We are not convinced 100 percent that the suspect who was killed operated in a solo or alone capacity," Seabrooks said.

All of this unfolded about 3 miles from where President Barack Obama was attending a fundraising luncheon.

Three women with gunshot wounds were admitted to Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, said Dr. Marshall Morgan, the chief of emergency medicine. One died, another was in surgery, and the third was in serious condition but doing well, he said.

Three other women went to UCLA Medical Center Santa Monica with relatively minor injuries, Morgan said. One has shrapnel-type injuries and the two others had injuries not related to gunfire, he said.

Jeff Furrows of the Santa Monica Fire Department said there was extensive fire damage inside the home where two bodies were found, and one of the wounded women was found with a gunshot wound in a car nearby.

Jerry Cunningham Rathner, who lives near the house, said she heard gunshots and came out onto her porch to see a man shooting at the residence. Soon, the building erupted in flames and was billowing smoke.

The gunman, dressed in black and wearing an ammunition belt, went to the corner and pointed a rifle at a woman in a car and told her to pull over, Rathner said. He then signaled to a second car, also driven by a woman, to slow down and began firing into the vehicle.

"He fired three to four shots into the car — boom, boom, boom, right at her," said Cunningham, who went to the woman's aid and saw she was wounded in the shoulder.

"I can't believe she didn't have worse injuries," Cunningham said.

She said the gunman then abducted the woman in the first car and drove away.

From there, the scene shifted to Santa Monica College, located in a neighborhood of strip malls and homes more than a mile inland from the city's famous Santa Monica Pier, Third Street Promenade and its expansive, sandy beaches.

Jimes Gillespie, 20, told The Associated Press he was in the college's library studying when he heard gunfire, and he and dozens of other students began fleeing the three-story building.

"As I was running down the stairs I saw one of the gunmen," said Gillespie, who described the shooter as a white man in his 20s, wearing cornrows in his hair and black overalls. He said the man was carrying a shotgun.

Gillespie believed there were two shooters because he heard two kinds of gunfire — a shotgun and a handgun — but only saw one person.

"The shotgun blast was first. It was either him or the partner who shot eight to 10 handgun shots," Gillespie said. "Then after I saw the gunman I heard more shots and I ran out of the library through the emergency exit."

As Gillespie ran across campus, he said he saw a car in front of the English building that was riddled with bullet holes, had shattered windows and a baby's car seat in the back.

Another student, Khwanfa Wilepananon, said he and a friend were on the library's third floor when they heard a loud bang and a woman's scream coming from the first floor. As he and a friend fled downstairs, he said they heard two shots.

"It was so scary," said Wilepananon. "It was so dark and I was scared. We didn't know what to do."

Santa Monica police Sgt. Rudy Flores said numerous witnesses called to report that the shooting near the college began with a man on a street corner near the college firing shots at vehicles, including a bus.

California Highway Patrol Officer Vince Ramirez said his agency began receiving 911 calls just minutes before noon.

"We understand one shooter was taken into custody shortly after we arrived," he said.

The two-year college, with about 34,000 students, was in the midst of final exams Friday. It was quickly locked down by police, and students were told to leave.

As the drama unfolded, Obama was attending a fundraising luncheon about 3 miles away.

Secret Service spokesman Max Milien said the agency was aware of the shooting but it had no impact on the president's event.

Comments

bigdeal

Make that up yourself, or get it off the internet?
And sometimes I find humor in your levity, this just isn't one of those times. You are much better with sex and body function humor.
Just be thankful you don't live in California I guess.

Wingmaster

Original thoughts come easy to me...no big deal.

With your anger issue in this brave new world should you be denied purchasing a gun? Just wondering!

bigdeal

I'll ask my therapist.

Wingmaster

LOL, is that covered by Obama care?

bigdeal

No, and it would be a lot cheaper if I wasn't married to her. lol

GHJames

The gun debate over assault rifles and 30 round mags is a moot point. Pandoras box was opened a long time ago. With millions of them out there, there is no going back. We need to focus on the root causes of violence that happens to be gun related. If these people couldn't get a gun then strap on some explosives, buy a pressure cooker, drive a car through a playground... They will find a way unless the causes are addressed first and foremost.

Lanivan

It's all about violence, the love of violence, the use of violence to express anger at and frustration for an imperfect world and a feeling of powerlessness. Society has taught us that violence is cool; that guns are sexy and a way to protest, as well as protect. Interestingly, gun sales have gone down 30% over the last several years, but those who are most susceptible to the message are the ones that keep buying. And the criminals/severely mentally ill, who can pick them up in the US on the way to the Farmer's Market, on the cheap, without background checks, registration, or training.

GHJames

You got the first part, as for the rest, if you see a gun cheap on your way to the farmers market- call me! My background is clean and I once took a gun safety class. ; )

retired DOC

8 to 10 handgun shots? I find that hard to believe as he had a 6 shot cap and ball black powder single action handgun. I bet now Feinstein will try to ban those also.

Vladtheimp

Better snatch up all the black powder we can - Dianne Feinstein's next gun grabbing legislation will focus on black powder pistols, and ban horns that hold more than 300 grains.

I'm surprised the lords and ladies of the democrat party permit us to have table silverware.

Lanivan

You guys use table silverware?...

Wingmaster

Keeps our knuckles from dragging on the ground while we eat food we killed.

bigdeal

No, it doesn't seem to do that at all.

Vladtheimp

Don't guess the Trib will have any stories about this: ‘Pro-Gun’ Ricin mailer turns out to be Hollywood anti-gunner http://weaponsman.com/?p=9018&ut...

Lanivan

Actually, I'm impressed with this site. Interesting article - failing marriages can be toxic, but really....

I'm sure your sensibilities were offended by the bikini shot, although acknowledging how necessary it was to bolster the content of the article.

Vladtheimp

The content of the article needed no bikini shots - it was progressive politicians getting white powder with notes from a gun nut, that fact being publicized big time by the media making a case that gun ownership needs to be restricted, no matter the Constitution, and the reality being that the threat was from a woman who hated guns and hated her husband. Not unlike the many "racist" threats being made by alleged minority victims, even Columbia University professors and others http://www.nationalcenter.org/P2...

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