What we know about the suspect in the California school shooting

Posted at 5:20 PM, Nov 14, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-14 17:20:06-05

After sheriff’s deputies responded to a shooting at Saugus High School in Southern California on Thursday, six students were rushed to local hospitals with gunshot wounds.

Students are evacuated from Saugus High School onto a school bus after a shooting at the school left two students dead and three wounded on November 14, 2019 in Santa Clarita, California. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)

“Among those that were transported turned out to be the suspect, who is currently in the hospital in grave condition,” said Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva.

In the hours after the student opened fire just after 7:30 a.m. at the Santa Clarita high school — killing a 16-year-old girl and 14-year-old boy and wounding three other classmates — details began to trickle out about the suspect.

The shooting occurred on his 16th birthday, said Capt. Kent Wegener of the sheriff’s department homicide bureau.

“The suspect was later identified as one of the victims who was found in the quad,” Wegener told reporters.

The shooter used a .45-caliber pistol, which was recovered at the scene, authorities said. The weapon was out of bullets.

Detectives reviewed surveillance video from the scene that showed the suspect in the quad, Wegener said. He took out a handgun from backpack and shot five other students before shooting himself in the head, the captain said.

The suspect, who has not been identified, is a resident of the city of Santa Clarita — about 30 miles northwest of Los Angeles, authorities said.

His mother and his girlfriend were talking with detectives, according to Wegener.

Investigators did a cursory check of the suspect’s home and were obtaining a warrant to search the residence, Wegener said.

Paul Delacourt, FBI assistant director in charge in Los Angeles, said there are no known additional threats and the motive for the shooting not known.

Investigators will check rumors the suspect may have posted threats on social media, county Undersheriff Tim Murakami said on Twitter.

“If you ever learn of posted threats please notify us ASAP,” Murakami wrote.

After announcing the second death, Villanueva said, “With a heavy heart, we’re going to move on with the investigation and figure out what went wrong.

“I hate to have Saugus be added to the names of Columbine, Parkland, Sandy Hook, but it’s a reality that affects us all throughout the nation — something that we’re going to have to figure out.”