Cal­i­for­nia shoot­ing vic­tim was sur­vivor of Las Ve­gas at­tack

The Irish Times - - World News -

A man who sur­vived last year’s mass shoot­ing in Las Ve­gas was among the 12 peo­ple killed when a gun­man opened fire in a bar in south­ern Cal­i­for­nia on Thurs­day.

Telemachus Or­fanos (27), a US Navy vet­eran, made it through the or­deal in Oc­to­ber 2017 when a gun­man opened fire at the Route 91 Fes­ti­val in Las Ve­gas, killing 58 peo­ple, only to die less than 10 min­utes from his home near Thou­sand Oaks.

“My son was in Las Ve­gas with a lot of his friends and he came home. He didn’t come home last night,” his mother, Su­san Sch­midt-Or­fanos told ABC News. “I don’t want prayers, I don’t want thoughts; I want gun con­trol,” she said.

Hun­dreds of peo­ple gath­ered on Thurs­day evening to re­mem­ber the dozen peo­ple shot and killed by a Ma­rine vet­eran at the packed Border­line Bar & Grill the night be­fore.

Yes­ter­day, Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump de­scribed the gun­man re­spon­si­ble for the mass shoot­ing as “a very sick puppy”.

In­ves­ti­ga­tors have not com­mented on a mo­tive for the ram­page or whether men­tal ill­ness played a role. But neigh­bours re­ported hear­ing fre­quent loud rows be­tween gun­man Ian David Long and his mother, and called po­lice af­ter one, in April.

No grounds to com­mit

Au­thor­i­ties at the time wor­ried that the 28-year-old Afghanistan war vet­eran might have post-trau­matic stress dis­or­der but a men­tal health spe­cial­ist con­cluded there were no grounds to have him in­vol­un­tar­ily com­mit­ted.

On Wed­nes­day night, the for­mer ma­chine gun­ner, dressed all in black with his hood pulled up, opened fire with a hand­gun at the Border­line Bar & Grill dur­ing col­lege night, then ap­par­ently killed him­self as scores of po­lice closed in.

At the White House, Mr Trump touted his ef­forts to fund work on PTSD among vet­er­ans. He de­clined to en­gage with ques­tions about stricter gun con­trol laws.

Julie Han­son, who lives next door to the ranch-style home that Long shared with his mother, de­scribed him as “odd” and “dis­re­spect­ful” well be­fore he left home a decade ago, got mar­ried and en­listed in the Marines. She could of­ten hear him yelling, but sev­eral months ago unusu­ally loud bang­ing and shout­ing prompted her hus­band to call au­thor­i­ties.

Thou­sand Oaks is a city of about 130,000 peo­ple about 64km from Los An­ge­les. – AP

Ian David Long: neigh­bours had re­ported hear­ing loud rows

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