California shooting: gunman kills 12 at Thousand Oaks western bar
Twelve people were shot and killed when a gunman opened fire in a crowded country and western bar in southern California, police have said.
The gunman is also dead, said sheriff Sgt Eric Buschow of Ventura County. A sheriff’s sergeant was one of those killed.
“It’s a horrific scene in there. There’s blood everywhere,” said Sheriff Geoff Dean. “The suspect is part of that.”
Dean said others within the bar at the time of the shooting were currently being interviewed by investigators.
At least 30 shots were fired at the Borderline Bar amp; Grill in Thousand Oaks, which is about 40 miles west of Los Angeles, with the first reports coming in at 11.20pm local time.
Witnesses said a man fired several shots from a handgun before tossing smoke bombs into the crowded bar.
Dean said sheriff ’s sergeant Ron Helus responded to the scene and was shot after he entered the building. He died at a hospital early on Thursday. Authorities did not say how the gunman died.
Dean says around 10 other people were shot and wounded. No other information on the victims was immediately known.
The bar’s website says its hosts “College Country Night” every Wednesday. Police said hundreds were inside when the shooting occurred.