Gunman picking random targets kills 4 in California
RED BLUFF, CALIF.— A gunman choosing targets at random opened fire in a rural Northern California town Tuesday, killing four people at several sites and wounding others at an elementary school before police shot him dead, authorities said.
The gunfire began around 8 a.m. in the community of Rancho Tehama Reserve, about 130 miles north of Sacramento.
Police offered no immediate word on the assailant’s motive, but a sheriff ’s official said the shooter’s neighbors had reported a domestic violence incident.
“It was very clear at the onset that we had an individual that was randomly picking targets,” Tehama County Assistant Sheriff Phil Johnston said.
Witnesses reported hearing gunshots and children screaming at an elementary school about five miles down a road from where the shooting is believed to have started.
Several people were wounded at the school, said Jeanine Quist, an administrative assistant with the Corning Union Elementary School District.
Salvador Tello said the gunman fired at a truck in front of him as he was dropping off his three children. Tello said he was about three blocks from the school when bullets made “big holes” in the truck in front of him.
Details were still sketchy hours after the shootings, and authorities did not have a firm count of the wounded due to the number of places the gunman attacked, Johnston said.
Two hospitals said they were treating a total of seven gunshot victims, including at least three children.