Man kills at least 4, police shoot him dead

Witness to Santa Monica shooting: "He was very calm just standing there, panning around, seeing who he could shoot, one bullet at a time, like target practice."
Associated Press
Jun 8, 2013


A man with a semi-automatic rifle killed at least four people and wounded several others Friday as he carried out a deadly rampage across several blocks of a normally idyllic beachfront city. Police shot him dead in the Santa Monica College Library.

The violence began when the gunman, dressed in all black and wearing what appeared to be a ballistic jacket, opened fire on a house where two bodies were found, Santa Monica Police Chief Jacqueline Seabrooks said.

Two officials said Friday night that the killings began as a domestic violence incident and the victims in the home were the gunman's father and brother. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to publicly discuss the case.

As the house burst into flames, the man carjacked a woman at gunpoint, spraying bullets as she drove and telling her to stop so he could shoot, police said. He wounded a woman in a car before directing his driver to head to campus, where police said he opened fire on a city bus, a police car and other vehicles, as well as bystanders and pedestrians.

The driver of an SUV leaving a campus parking lot was killed and a passenger was wounded as the car crashed through a block wall.

From there, the gunman entered the campus, fatally wounding a woman as he made his way toward the college's library, where students were studying for final exams.

"We saw a woman get shot in the head," said administrative assistant Trena Johnson, who looked out the window of the dean's office, where she works, when she heard gunfire. "I haven't been able to stop shaking," she said.

Inside the library, students reported hearing gunfire and screams.

"I was totally scared to death and I can't believe it happened so fast," said Vincent Zhang, a 20-year-old economics major who said he heard a woman pleading, "No, no. Please, no."

The gunman continued to shoot at people in the library, Seabrooks said, but apparently didn't hit anybody there as dozens ran for the exits.

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

Just 3 miles away, President Barack Obama was attending a fundraising luncheon. Secret Service spokesman Max Milien said the agency was aware of the shooting, which began just before noon, but it had no impact on the president's event.

After the gunman was killed, police wearing helmets and armed with shotguns and rifles searched the campus for a possible second shooter. A man dressed entirely in black, the words "Life is a Gamble" on the back of his sweatshirt, was seen being led away in handcuffs.

Sgt. Richard Lewis, a Santa Monica police spokesman, said at a news conference Friday night that the man was questioned and released, and he is not a suspect.

The identities of those who were killed were not immediately released.

Three of the gunman's victims died immediately. The woman near the library died at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, where she had been admitted in critical condition.

Two other women were also admitted to the hospital, said Dr. Marshall Morgan, the chief of emergency medicine. One was listed in critical condition after undergoing surgery. The other arrived in serious condition but was upgraded to fair condition Friday night.

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

Nine crime scenes were under investigation, said Lewis, the police spokesman.

Police had said earlier that seven people were killed, including the gunman, but they revised the death toll to a total of five at a news conference late Friday. Lewis said there initially were conflicting descriptions of some victims and they were counted twice.

Jerry Cunningham Rathner, who lives near the house that caught fire, 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, pointed a rifle at a woman in a car and told her to pull over, Cunningham 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 Rathner, who went to the woman's aid and saw she was wounded in the shoulder.

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

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

The two-year college, spread out across 38 acres, has about 34,000 students.

Jimes Gillespie, 20, told The Associated Press he was in the 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.

As he 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.

In a staff parking lot, college employee Joe Orcutt said he saw the gunman standing calmly with his weapon, looking as though he was trying to determine which people to shoot at.

"I turn around and that's when he's just standing there, like he's modeling for some ammo magazine," Orcutt said. "He was very calm just standing there, panning around, seeing who he could shoot, one bullet at a time, like target practice."


2cents's picture

"I turn around and that's when he's just standing there, like he's modeling for some ammo magazine,"

And there was not one armed citizen around to take out the trash?


an armed Citizen on a College Campus in California, nope, had to wait for the guys in blue to show up with their guns. Isn't that grand.


yea and then he would be the one that would be charged for killing the killer.I know it dont make anymore sense then it sounds believe me , but that just what would happen and what would even sicken me even more , is that the N>R>A would be leading the charge cause they are against people that are law bidding , they would rather support nut cases that go out and kill . And you can not tell me thats not what they are doing and Congress and The house are just as guilty as the N.R.A

Simple Enough II

I'm going to throw down the B*llSh*t card on your comments. How is the NRA at fault?


you dont read the news or keep up with the happenings , so you arent that intrested


Your posts show the mentality of a 3rd or 4th grade child that is miserably failing in English and History with the added defect of understanding the news in general. You may want to consider that.

2cents's picture
Raoul Duke

I would guess that most/all universities and schools frown upon ANYONE bringing a gun onto campus~why do you think these morons target them? Not JUST in California.

Raoul Duke

Even if you wouldn't be breaking any laws, who would be crazy enough to take on a nut case with an assault rifle, when all you have is a hand gun? Dirty Harry and Billy Jack are FICTIONAL characters.


well now theres five more people that have died and for what ? just to live by the bill of rights , You rights are more important them the 5 lives or the shooting at not just one school , but many schools .
Get with it People

Raoul Duke

Murder is illegal, but people keep doing it. Banning guns won't stop murders or shooting sprees in ANY way whatsoever.

Simple Enough II

I agree there.

swiss cheese kat's picture
swiss cheese kat

The U.S. Supreme Court says that every citizen has an individual right to own a firearm.

Simple Enough II

Hmm I wonder if he was a tweeker or was on perscription drugs like anyone of the psychotropic drugs for anxiety and such.


I was hoping it wasn't a Caucasian but he fit the all out cloud of dust rampage we've come to know nationally. Killing random crowds of people should be a mandatory death sentence. He got his death sentence.


I am curious of the picture beside the story. It is a bit misleading, probably done on purpose to "stir the pot". An armed police officer in full riot gear, leading YOUNG children out of somewhere. This had nothing to do with young children.

swiss cheese kat's picture
swiss cheese kat

Police said was probably an AR-15. So a semi-automatic rifle is again being tied to a US mass shooting.


Its all but impossible to legally own an at-15 in Cali. It is cometely illegal to carry a gun in campus, and its ddfjnately illegal to kill someone... please tell me how well your laws are working?

sandtown born a...

Moderators have removed this comment because it contained Off-topic comments.

swiss cheese kat's picture
swiss cheese kat

true. Big O and others will tell you: Just swallow the Kool Aid or we will audit you,collect your phone activity and trample your constitutional rights.


The banning of guns will do nothing but make us all into targets. If the bad guy wants a gun, he will get a gun. Ban it not. Believe me. It's like your home's front door. They are designed to keep honest people out. If the bad guy wants in your house, he will get in. Good luck walking out of my house BTW, bad guy. Why? BECAUSE I OWN GUNS AND WILL USE THEM TO PROTECT MY FAMILY!!! Any questions Gene44870? Oh, if you're gonna scrutinize someone for their education level and disinterest in reading up on what's happening, maybe you should check your grammar. Just saying.


Another gun-hugging nut job. But, oh yeah, he had rights.


gun-hugging = good term

2cents's picture

Don't say that in a gay bar too loud : )


Did you have a bad experience?
Or (depending on how you look at it), a good experience? :)


I was talking on Skype with a friend I went to college with 20 years ago that lives in England and I'm sure you know England has regulated gun laws in the past 20 years. He told me that murder is down to some degree, but home invasions is up by a big measure, I'm going to research so I can present facts, but what he told me is "do you know why you aren't robbed in the US when you are at home...because you might own a gun, if you live in the US you will be robbed when you are at work." This is not the case in England, they will rob you at anytime, because they know you won't have a gun.


@swiss cheese kat; the AR-15 has nothing to do with this. Yeah he may have used one, but banning them wouldn't have prevented this. Trust me. All law abiding citizens should be issued one to protect themselves. The ban would just prohibit the good guys from having them, hence, the bad guys would continue to outgun us. See my point?

swiss cheese kat's picture
swiss cheese kat

Very clearly.
The bad guys will never outgun me and my family.

sandtown born a...

Everytime some wacko goes off his meds, don't have the childhood he feels he should have, or is just wanting the mass press attention, the same old gun debate will be front and center. OHHH NOOO a big bad AR-15 semi auto. VERY MISLEADING, Christmas 1970 I received a 22 semi auto rifle as a pre teen to hunt with my father and I still have it. We refinished the stock together and he taught me all the safety of firearms. Memories I will never forget. Dress that same 22 up with the fancy add ons and there you have it a AR style rifle. Oh Yeah AR does not stand for assault rifle it stands for ArmaLite Rifle.The UNINFORMED are so easy to be fooled into the Scare Tactic Hype. Get informed OUTSIDE of the mainstream lopsided media before jumping on any bandwagon. I am 911 in this castle

Eph 2 8-10

Another case of a mentally disturbed individual, and another reason that our mental health system needs to be fixed NOW!!!


Mental health? Mental health wasn't an acceptable alibi locally when the kid killed the baby. Why say it's a mental health issue in this case and no one has nothing to say? Hypocritical.


Lady Dye The children were on campus for a field trip, so I guess the picture did have some value.


Did it state that in the article? I have read it twice now. No mention of YOUNG children.


Watched a little bit of WGN last night.

Friday there were 13 shootings in Chicago - where's the national coverage? And the wkend ain't over.