SAN JOSE, Calif. – A Northern California rail yard employee who gunned down 9 different workers earlier than taking his personal life appeared to focus on his victims and fired greater than 39 photographs, the Santa Clara County sheriff mentioned Thursday.
The gunman, whose ex-wife says struggled with anger, informed a minimum of one individual “I’m not going to shoot you,” Sheriff Laurie Smith mentioned. “After which he shot different folks. So I think about there was some type of thought on who he needed to shoot.”
Smith mentioned the shooter arrived on the mild rail facility for the Valley Transportation Authority in San Jose about 6 a.m. Wednesday with a duffel bag containing semi-automatic handguns and high-capacity magazines.
The 57-year-old gunman, recognized as Samuel J. Cassidy, opened hearth at about 6:30 a.m. in two buildings on the sprawling mild rail hub, Smith mentioned. VTA gives bus, mild rail and different transit providers all through Santa Clara County, essentially the most populated county within the Bay Space.
“When our deputies went by means of the door, initially he was nonetheless firing rounds,” Smith mentioned. “When our deputy noticed him, he took his life.”
U.S. customs officers detained the gunman in 2016 and located he professed a hatred of his office, in accordance with a Division of Homeland Safety memo obtained by The Wall Avenue Journal.
He had “books about terrorism and worry and manifestos … in addition to a black memo e-book full of a number of notes about how he hates the VTA” when Customs and Border Safety detained him after a visit to the Philippines, in accordance with the memo reported by the Journal.
A Biden administration official mentioned he noticed the memo and detailed its contents to The Related Press.The Division of Homeland Safety didn’t instantly affirm the memo to USA TODAY.
Timeline of occasions:Officers rushed into San Jose rail yard as gunshots had been nonetheless ringing out
He tried to warn his co-workers, then he was shot:Family members mourn victims of capturing at San Jose rail yard
The victims had been largely front-line staff: bus and light-weight rail operators, mechanics, linemen and an assistant superintendent.
Eight victims had been initially recognized by the Santa Clara County coroner’s workplace: Paul Delacruz Megia, 42; Taptejdeep Singh, 36; Adrian Balleza, 29; Jose Dejesus Hernandez, 35; Timothy Michael Romo, 49; Michael Joseph Rudometkin, 40; Abdolvahab Alaghmandan, 63, and Lars Kepler Lane, 63.
A ninth sufferer, Alex Ward Fritch, 49, was taken to a neighborhood hospital earlier than he died Wednesday night.
Cassidy was a long-time rail firm employee. Payroll information obtained by ABC-7 Information point out he earned $160,000 in base, extra time and different pay as a VTA “substation maintainer.”
Investigators are attempting to find out whether or not he was concerned in a hearth at his dwelling and one other close by blaze. He was seen on a neighbor’s safety digicam footage leaving his dwelling at 5:39 a.m. with a duffel bag, in accordance with the San Jose Mercury Information.
About an hour later, the San Jose Fireplace Division obtained a name a few blaze at a lumber enterprise about 5 miles away from the rail yard. Then the primary 911 calls reporting the capturing on the mild rail yard got here in, adopted minutes later by a name of a fireplace on the gunman’s dwelling.
Smith mentioned the gunman appeared to have set a timer or slow-burn system to set his dwelling on hearth.
A lady who dated Cassidy filed a restraining order in opposition to him in 2009, accusing him of rape and sexual assault. The submitting, obtained by The Mercury Information, additionally consists of accusations that he had extreme temper swings and suffered from alcohol abuse.
His ex-wife says he had talked about killing folks at work greater than a decade in the past. “I by no means believed him, and it by no means occurred,” Cecilia Nelms mentioned. “Till now.”
Nelms was married to Cassidy for about 10 years earlier than they filed for divorce in 2005. She informed The Mercury Information he typically was offended at co-workers and about his assignments at work. She mentioned, nonetheless, that she had not spoken with him in additional than a decade.
Authorities haven’t mentioned whether or not the shooter was a authorized gun proprietor. Smith, the sheriff, mentioned the 9 mm handguns he had seem like authorized. He additionally had 11 high-capacity magazines, every with 12 rounds.
In California, it’s unlawful to purchase magazines that maintain greater than 10 rounds. Nevertheless, if Cassidy had obtained them earlier than Jan. 1, 2000, he could be allowed to have them except he was in any other case prohibited from possessing firearms.
Smith informed CNN and NBC a locker on the rail yard believed to be the gunman’s contained “supplies for bombs, detonator cords, the precursors to an explosive.”
The gunman’s social media presence, if he had one, was not readily obvious, neither is a felony file.
‘What the hell is fallacious with us?:After San Jose capturing, California Gov. Gavin Newsom asks
California Gov. Gavin Newsom met with some relations of the victims and spoke at a information convention Wednesday, expressing frustration with the cycle of mass shootings within the U.S. He praised the efforts of legislation enforcement on the scene however requested: “What the hell is fallacious with us, and when are we going to come back to grips with this?”
Later Wednesday, President Joe Biden mentioned he was “but once more” ordering flags be flown at half workers to mark one other mass capturing and made a plea for gun management laws.
“I urge Congress to take instant motion and heed the decision of the American folks, together with the overwhelming majority of gun homeowners, to assist finish this epidemic of gun violence in America,” he mentioned.
The U.S. has traditionally reported a gun murder fee about 25 instances greater than that of different rich nations. In 2021 alone, there have been 15 mass killings, every with a minimum of 4 victims lifeless, in accordance with an Related Press/USA TODAY/Northeastern College database. All circumstances had been shootings and claimed a complete 87 lives.
Wednesday’s mass capturing was Santa Clara County’s second in lower than two years. In 2019, a gunman opened hearth on the Gilroy Garlic Competition in Gilroy, California, killing three folks and wounding 17.
Bacon reported from Arlington, Va.; Hauck from Chicago. Contributing: Christal Hayes, USA TODAY; Jorge L. Ortiz; The Related Press