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

Vladtheimp

Color me unsurprised that the Trib relegates all of the national scandals, international events, and other important information into "10 things you need to know" but ensures any news having to do with gun crimes and "assault-style rifles" is front page news. Fair and Balanced - NOT!

Wingmaster

Their getting pathetically predictable.

Hey Trib, why don't you find a positive story to print regarding a gun. There are thousands of stories out there. Your bias is transparent and far from award winning!

Lanivan

"Hey Trib, why don't you find a positive story to print regarding a gun. There are thousands of stories out there". Thousands? Could you provide a few?

Meanwhile, over 4,000 people have died in the the US from guns since Newtown, December 2012 - about the same number that died on 9/11/01, which created the opportune impetus for two major wars costing trillions and about 4,977 combat deaths so far, the Patriot Act and explosion of the billion+ dollar metadata industry, not to mention Homeland Security and the War on Terror, all with congressional approval and nary a peep of cutting back on funding authorization by the House. Meanwhile, Congress can't seem to pass a piddling background check proposal, even with 90+% approval by US citizens, because some loonies and the NRA cry "unconstitutional".

If you are interested, Joe Nocera of the NYTimes puts out a US gun report nearly every day. There are thousands of stories the GHTribune could report on of the "negative" impact of guns. but does not - here are a just a few. Definitely not lite beach reading:

http://nocera.blogs.nytimes.com/...

http://nocera.blogs.nytimes.com/...

http://nocera.blogs.nytimes.com/...

Vladtheimp

Here's a fair and balanced look at use of guns defensively. http://www.businessweek.com/arti...

"Making various reasonable-sounding adjustments, other social scientists have suggested that perhaps a figure somewhere between 250,000 and 370,000 might be more accurate."

Taking the lower number, guns have been used to protect us from criminals who don't seem to pay attention to your oh-so-progressive gun control laws roughly 41,000 times since Newtown. If you want to read about individual stories of potential victims saving themselves, read the NRA or thousands of gun blogs, not a business columnist for the New York Times who infamously equated the Tea Party with terrorists (maybe the IRS, EPA and the White House are in his biography?)

Lanivan

Thanks for the fair and balanced look-see. As fair and balanced as it is, it only serves to make me more concerned to think guns, the love of guns, and the need for guns has now permeated society to such a degree it is on a par with data-mining. Vanquish your enemies, sayeth the lord, I mean Conan the Barbarian.

I know it's tough reading Joe's daily gun report. By the way, you left out his apology regarding the tea party: "In an August 2011 column on the US debt ceiling crisis, Nocera compared "Tea Party Republicans" with terrorists, and wrote that they "have waged jihad on the American people" and suggested that they "can put aside their suicide vests".[4] This rhetoric was criticized by a number of media outlets.[5][6][7][8] In a follow-up column, Nocera writes "[what] most surprised me is how darned liberal I sound sometimes." He then apologized:

"The words I chose were intemperate and offensive to many, and I've been roundly criticized. I was a hypocrite, the critics said, for using such language when on other occasions I've called for a more civil politics. In the cool light of day, I agree with them. I apologize.

After comparing congressional negotiations with "hand-to-hand combat", Nocera concluded the column with "I won't be calling anybody names. That I can promise." End quote. Now those are the words of a true patriot.

Wingmaster

Ya mean like this Lan
http://gunssavelives.net/#

Lanivan

Yes - thanks Wing.

Wingmaster

.

Lanivan

This is truly profound.....

Lanivan

Or are you mimicking a bullet hole?

Wingmaster

Na, I use high shock rounds that leave a far bigger hole!¤

Lanivan

Data-miners have now captured your smartphone response. Be prepared for a flurry of ammo ads.

Wingmaster

Sweet, I hope they are in stock and not bought out by government operatives!!

Lanivan

Oh yeah....the stock just keeps goin' up. Thank you Wing and company!

Wingmaster

My small contribution to our BOOMING economy;-)

Lanivan

Standard and Poor thanks you by lifting the US credit outlook...http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/busine...

retired DOC

Assault style rifle, shotgun blast, 8-10 handgun shots, white guy with corn rows? Sounds as if not everyone saw or heard the same thing.

Vladtheimp

Since this was such a critical story that the Trib printed it in lieu of the many scandals that impact all of us, I expect they will follow it up with, at the minimum, informing us of the IDENTITY of the shooter.

Lanivan

I know you and Wing will be pleased to know that the state of California is not only making every attempt at determining the identity of the shooters, they are also making an attempt to keep guns out of the hands of the criminals and severely mentally ill who do the majority of those shootings:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/20...

Wingmaster

Your right Lan, Cali is doing everything to get dangerous weapons off the street.
http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Gov...

Lanivan

It's just one way to counteract the NRA marketing push of their new mini AR-15. They are marketing it to the 4-year-old, encouraging them to ask their mommies and daddies to buy it for them at Christmastime - "think how cool it would be to see your very own AR-15 under the Christmas tree".

Leeeeeroy Jenkins - goin' in!

Wingmaster

Just read your assine reply. Please explain why it would be wrong for a kid to want a gun under the Christmas tree. Helluva a lot more responsible and instructional then a stupid video game. More kids need this kind of gift. Teaches them responsibility and self reliance. Something sorely missing in todays youth!

Lanivan

I agree with you re: video games (especially the violent ones) and the need to choose toys that teach responsibility and self reliance. Nothing wrong with a rifle that looks like dad's hunting rifle and encourages family traditions, or a toy pistol to play cops and robbers, or cowboys and Indians. But a toy that mimics assault weapons whose only purpose is to do a lot of killing of people in a short period of time? How could that possibly teach responsibility and self-reliance? All it does is encourage aggressive behaviors underlined with anger, and is yet another way to glorify violence - all to the young, impressionable 4-yr-old.

The NRA is getting into the marketing of stuff in a big way - it's a big revenue source. The mini AR-15 marketing campaign came out last December during and after Newtown. Very bad timing.

Btw, it's 'asinine'.....:<

Wingmaster

Why o why is it ok to "play" cowboy and Indians, killing a minority group none the less! A little insensitive and encouraging aggressive behaviors towards minorities don't ya think?

That does it, no more toy tanks, battleships, F-15 fighter..These toys represent killing massive amounts of people and will give these kids wrong impressions.

And by the way, how dare you call Native Americans "Indians". Rather azz in 9 lines don't you think?

Wingmaster

I wonder what is more important, the description of the gun or the description or name of the shooter. We shall see.

bigdeal

Oh yes, let's name the people, as that is what they were seeking all the while killing and shooting people...fame (or infamy).
We all know guns don't kill...that is exactly why Regan outlawed assault rifles, Mitt outlawed assault rifles, Palin stopped Alaska's national guard from having assault rifles, but Obama says you don't need 300 round magazines...watch out for THAT ONE, Obama is coming for your guns next!!!

GHJames

It was not the National Guard that had weapons taken away in Alaska. It was the Alaskan Defense Force. An untrained, unpaid, militia with 280 members who somehow convinced the state to pay for their firearms. If Michigan wanted to start buying people rifles in these economic times I would be furious. (Unless they sent one to me of course.)

bigdeal

You have proved my point, it is a great idea when a Repub comes up with the idea of taking away your guns. But when our current President simply says you don't need 30 round magazines, they flip out and say they are coming for my guns. Pure fear-mongering. What a joke of a party.

GHJames

She took state owned property from people who had no business possessing state owned property. The government can take what they own. These people should have either bought their own guns or joined the military. It would be like Snyder buying me a car as long as I promise to give people rides in a state emergency. Foolishness.

Wingmaster

No names, no shame. Who has more fame involving guns...this shooter or Diane Fienstein. Sometimes posting is no big deal!

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