Sheriff's Office Releases Details of Shooting Rampage in Isla Vista
Isla Vista - May 24th, 2014
The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office has identified the deceased suspect who shot and killed six people and wounded 13 others in a shooting rampage that occurred on May 23 in Isla Vista. The suspect, who died from a gunshot wound, possibly self-inflicted, is 22-year-old Elliot Oliver Robertson Rodger, a Santa Barbara City College student from Woodland Hills who was living in Isla Vista. The Sheriff’s Office is reviewing a 140 page manifesto written by the suspect and videos he posted on YouTube prior to the shootings.
The Sheriff’s Office has also released the names of three UCSB students who were killed in the shooting rampage. They are 22-year-old Katherine Breann Cooper of Chino Hills, California, 19-year-old Veronika Elizabeth Weiss of Westlake Village, California and 20-year-old Christopher Ross Michaels-Martinez of Los Osos, California. The names of three more victims who were found deceased in the suspect’s apartment are being withheld pending notification of next of kin.
In addition to the seven fatalities, there were 13 people wounded. Four of those were apparently injured by the suspect’s vehicle, eight sustained gunshot wounds and one sustained a minor injury from an unknown origin. Of the seven people still hospitalized, one is in serious condition.
Investigators from the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office along with allied agencies are working together to process and investigate this complex mass murder case which includes 12 crime scenes in ten different locations. So far investigators have been able to determine that Rodger murdered three victims at his apartment located in the 6500 block of Seville Road. The male victims were all found dead, apparently from multiple stab wounds.
After killing the three victims in his residence, the suspect went to the Alpha Phi sorority house located in the 800 block of Embarcadero Del Norte. Several women in the sorority reported hearing loud and aggressive knocking on the front door for several minutes. Fortunately, no one opened the door and the suspect left. Shortly afterwards, witnesses reported seeing three women shot by the suspect across the street. Two of the women, Katherine Cooper and Veronika Weiss died from their injuries. A third victim received several gunshot wounds and was transported to the hospital.
Rodger then traveled to a nearby deli on Pardall Road. It appears he exited his vehicle and entered the deli where he shot and killed Christopher Michaels-Martinez. Sheriff’s deputies heard the shooting and responded to the scene. As they arrived the deputies witnessed the suspect, who they didn’t know at the time was the shooter, flee eastbound in his black BMW.
The suspect continued to the top of the loop where he fired multiple rounds at two people on the sidewalk. The suspect was driving on the wrong side of the road parallel to the sidewalk shooting from the driver’s window. He traveled onto eastbound Del Playa Drive where he brandished a handgun at a female victim. Rodger then turned his vehicle around and started driving westbound on Del Playa Drive. He shot at a lone Sheriff’s deputy who responded to the area by foot. The Sheriff’s deputy returned fire and Rodger drove off westbound on Del Playa.
As he traveled to the 6600 block of Del Playa Drive, Rodger struck and injured a bicyclist with his vehicle. He then continued westbound on Camino Del Sur. When he reached Camino Del Sur and Sabado Tarde he fired multiple shots at pedestrians. Three of them were struck by the suspect’s gunfire. He then traveled eastbound on Sabado Tarde where he shot another victim at the intersection of Camino Pescadero and Sabado Tarde.
The suspect continued driving eastbound and came into contact with four Sheriff’s deputies who were running across Acorn Park in response to the shootings. As the suspect accelerated past the deputies he fired at them. Three of the four Sheriff’s deputies returned fire, striking the vehicle and shooting the suspect in his left hip area.
Rodger turned south on El Embarcadero and then west on Del Playa Drive. Witnesses report he drove at a high rate of speed and struck another bicyclist. This victim was thrown onto the hood of Rodger’s car and caved in the windshield. The suspect’s vehicle then collided with several parked cars and came to a stop. Responding deputies immediately removed Rodger from the car and handcuffed him. They discovered Rodger was dead with an apparent gunshot wound to the head.
Three 9mm semi-automatic handguns were recovered from the suspect’s vehicle. Two of the guns were Sig-Sauer P226 models, and one was a Glock 34 long-slide. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms assisted the Sheriff’s Office in confirming that all of the weapons were legally purchased from federally licensed firearms dealers and were registered to the suspect. One weapon was purchased in Goleta, one in Oxnard and one in Burbank. All of the weapons were loaded. Rodger had in his possession 34 loaded ten round magazines for the Sig-Sauer pistol and 7 ten round magazines for the Glock pistol. Also recovered were five empty magazines for a Sig-Sauer pistol.
Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown praised the “resolute and heroic response by Sheriff’s deputies who raced to the scene and engaged in two separate gun battles with the suspect.” The Sheriff also said, “There is no telling how many other lives were saved as a result of their swift action.”
On behalf of all the men and women of the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office, Sheriff Brown extends condolences to all family members of those who were killed and wishes all those who were injured a quick and speedy recovery.
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