Twelve people, including a sheriff’s deputy, were killed after a gunman opened fire at a bar in Thousand Oaks, California, late Wednesday, authorities confirmed early Thursday. The shooter is also dead.
The gunman entered the Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks (about 40 miles west of Los Angeles) late Wednesday night (11:20 p.m.) during a weekly “College Country Night,” setting off smoke bombs and firing into the crowd, killing 12 people, including a police officer. The shooter also died.
The gunman was identified as Ian David Long, 28-year-old, of Newbury Park. Long, who apparently killed himself, was a Marine Corps veteran and was known to local law enforcement. He used a 45-caliber handgun in the shooting; the weapon usually holds 10 rounds and one in the chamber, but Long used an extended magazine in this shooting. His motive and death are under investigation. Long was known to law enforcement for minor offenses, including traffic violations. In April of this year he was interviewed by sheriff’s deputies owing to a disturbance complaint, and mental health specialists were called in because of Long “acting a little irrationally.”
Long, who was wearing a black sweater, entered the bar, turned right and shot other security guards and employees.
He then opened fire inside the bar.
Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean described the scene of the bar shooting in Thousand Oaks, California as horrific: “It’s a horrific scene in there, there is blood everywhere and the suspect is part of that, and I didn’t want to get that close and disturb the scene and possibly disturb the investigation.”
There is no known motive in the shooting at Borderline Bar & Grill in Thousand Oaks, Ventura County Sheriff said.
Witnesses inside described a chaotic scene, including people throwing bar stools through windows to clear an escape path. One woman said her friend threw her over a wall to get her out of harm’s way. Others hid under pool tables and in bathrooms. The entire shooting took about two and a half minutes, police said.
Sheriff’s Sgt. Ron Helus, a 29-year veteran of the sheriff’s office, responded to the gunfire and was shot after he entered the building. He died at a hospital early Thursday.
President Donald J. Trump has issued a proclamation ordering that flags throughout the nation be flown at half-staff in honor of the dozen people murdered Wednesday night in Thousand Oaks.