RED BLUFF, CA — A gunman killed four people and wounded a number of others at random Tuesday at multiple locations in rural Northern California, including an elementary school, before police shot him dead, authorities said.
Two hospitals said they were treating seven people, including at least three children.
No children were killed, Tehama County Assistant Sheriff Phil Johnston said. The shooter, who has not been officially identified, was fatally shot by police after engaging two officers who returned fire at an intersection in the community of Rancho Tehama Reserve, about 130 miles north of Sacramento, Johnston said.
“We really don’t have any idea what his motive was at this time,” Johnston said. The first calls of a shooting came in at around 7:52 a.m. and it was all over in around 45 minutes, he said. During the rampage the gunman fired into an elementary school, he said.
One student was wounded at the school and another child was shot while in a car being driven by a woman, who also was wounded, Johnston said.
“It was very clear at the onset that we had an individual that was randomly picking targets,” Johnston said.
“Essentially, with this individual after the initial shooting, he is reportedly took a vehicle and went on a shooting rampage throughout the community,” Johnston said at an afternoon press conference. At one point the gunman crashed the first vehicle, robbed another person of his vehicle before he was shot by police.
Brian Flint told the Record Searchlight newspaper in the city of Redding that his neighbor, whom he knows only as Kevin, was the gunman and that his roommate was among the victims. He said the shooter also stole his truck.
“The crazy thing is that the neighbor has been shooting a lot of bullets lately, hundreds of rounds, large magazines,” Flint said. “We made it aware that this guy is crazy and he’s been threatening us.”
Authorities have recovered a semi-automatic rifle and two handguns after the shootings in the rural subdivision described on its website as a “quiet private country community” where “the people are friendly and the pace is relaxed.”
Jeanine Quist, an administrative assistant with the Corning Union Elementary School District, said no one was killed at the school with kindergarten through fifth grades.