LOS ANGELES (AP) — Disturbing videos posted online by a 22-year-old gunman who opened fire in a Southern California college town, killing six before taking his own life, prompted the man’s mother to call authorities.
But new information suggests deputies never watched the videos, some of which mentioned specific plans to go to Isla Vista, Calif., and “kill everyone I see.”
The Associated Press reports that Santa Barbara Sheriff’s deputies checking on Elliot Rodger weeks before he killed six college students were aware of but didn’t view videos that prompted calls about his well-being.
The sheriff’s office said Thursday that four deputies, a police officer and a dispatcher in training were sent to Rodger’s apartment April 30 after being informed by the county’s mental health hotline that Rodger’s therapist and mother were concerned about videos he posted online.
They questioned him for 10 minutes and then briefed Rodger’s mother by telephone before having him speak to her directly. They found him shy, timid and polite.
He told them he was having trouble fitting in socially in Isla Vista and the videos were a way to express himself.
He reposted some of the videos before the May 23 rampage.