A mass shooting at the Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino, California on 2 December 2015 have at least fourteen dead and 17 others injured. The San Bernardino shooting is the deadliest mass shooting in the since Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre three years ago. Two suspects were killed by the police several miles away from the shootout. The San Bernardino shooting is the 355th in 2015 in the United States. The FBI is investigating the shooting as an act of terrorism.
Two gunmen opened fire at the Inland Regional Center, a center for people with developmental disabilities in San Bernardino, California. The violence began at around 11:00 a.m. They opened 65 to 75 rounds of fire and left a pipe bomb behind. The shooters have targeted a conference room with holiday party of the San Bernardino County Department of Public Health which was held in an auditorium. At least 100 people were said to be in attendance. The shooters escaped the scene in a dark-colored Ford Expedition SUV. The shooting erupted at Inland Regional Center, which serves people with developmental disabilities in Riverside and San Bernardino counties. According to the San Bernardino Fire Department, the shooting took place in the 1300 block of Waterman Avenue, near Orange Show Road.
Jarrod Burguan, chief of the San Bernardino Police Department, said information about the party is preliminary and described the incident an act of domestic terrorism. The other investigators are however not sure whether the shooting was an act of terrorism.
The police have used a robot to detonate some sort of "device" found at the scene. A battering ram has been used to get into the complex. A spokeswoman for Planned Parenthood of Orange and San Bernardino Counties, said the shootings were in no way connected to Planned Parenthood.
The two suspects are - Syed Rizwan Farook, 28, a U.S. citizen and his wife Tashfeen Malik, 27, a Pakistani. In a media briefing the police chief said, the attacker or attackers are dressed as if they came prepared. The motive of the attack remains unknown. The assailants were dressed in camouflage and wearing masks and police think the attackers were carrying long guns, not handguns.
Syed Farook is a U.S. citizen who worked as a health inspector for the San Bernardino County Department of Public Health, which was hosting Wednesday’s holiday party. The other suspect Tashfeen Malik is his Pakistani wife and is in the U.S. on a visa. Farook was at the party and was said to have left the party in under circumstances described as angry or something of that nature. Shortly after, he returned with either his wife of fiancee and allegedly opened fire.
On 5 December 2015, the Islamic State has described the attackers as "supporters" of their group. They made the declaration on their official radio station. While praising the attack, the group did not claim responsibility for it.
One of the witness told that Farooq had slipped away from the party. The police had found from records that Farooq had rented an SUV that matched the description of the vehicle that sped away after the shooting. This led the police to stake out the couple's house 10 miles away in nearby city of Redlands. According to a senior U.S. law enforcement official, one of the suspect is Syed Farook. According to records, Syed Farook is an American citizen who works as a health inspector for the San Bernardino County Department of Health, which was hosting the Wednesday's Holiday party. Syed Farook lived at that house one time.
During a stake-out there, the police have spotted a black SUV with Utah plates which matched to the one that was seen at the shooting. Shortly before 3 p.m. the occupants drove away and the police gave the chase.
The occupants from the SUV threw some objects out of the window, which are possibly pipe bombs. The suspects reached a residential neighborhood, stopped the car, and began exchanging fire with police. The female suspect drove the SUV, while the male suspect started shooting. One police officer was injured in the firefight, but his condition is not life-threatening. The two suspects were killed by the police. According to the authorities, the couple fired 76 rifle rounds and the police 380.
A third suspect who was found fleeing the scene was taken into custody. The police however were not sure if the third suspect had been one of the shooters.
The FBI who searched the residences of the deceased suspects to find motives of the attack said they found a stockpile of explosives and ammunition.
Syed Farook is a U.S. citizen. He was born in Pakistan and raise in California. Farooq visited Saudi Arabia twice.
According to Farook's family lawyer Mohammad Abuershaid, Farook had travelled to Saudi Arabia twice -- first in 2013 for the Hajj, the annual pilgrimage to Mecca that Muslims are required to take at least once in their lifetime, then again to marry Malik, whom he'd met through an online dating service. One of his online profiles mentioned recreational shooting and target practice as his interests. Though the FBI says that Farooq went to Pakistan, his family lawyer denied that.
Syed Farook may have been plotting an earlier attack in California with someone else, according to investigators. The investigators believed that Syed Farook and the other person have conspired in 2012 and a specific target was considered. However, they got spooked, when a round of terror-related arrests happened in the area. This led to the belief that Syed Farook may have been radicalized long before the San Bernardino shooting.
Tashfeen Malik, 27, is the second suspect in the shooting. She is from Pakistan and moved to Saudi Arabia at the age of 18 or 20.
Tashfeen Malik arrived in the U.S. on a K-1 visa in July 2014, and became a legal permanent resident. Two months earlier to arrival, her U.S. background check found no suspected ties to terrorism. Tashfeen is the wife of the primary suspect Syed Rizwan Farook. On 4 December 2015, it was revealed that Tashfeen Malik had posted a pledge of allegiance to ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi on Facebook while the shooting was happening. She made the post on an account with a different name. The post went up at 11 a.m. on Wednesday and was taken down Thursday as it violated the company's community standards that prohibit the promotion of terrorism or the glorification of violence. US officials have found that Tashfeen had ties to clerics of the Lal Masjid in Islamabad, an extremist hub.
Tashfeen was said to so private and conservative that there are no photographs of her. She operated a Facebook account on a false name.
Both Syed and his wife Tashfeen never got into trouble with the law. According to the police, neither was on any list of potentially radicalized people.
A week after the attack, the FBI said that both the suspects supported the ideology of the Islamic State. Syed Farook's father said that his son was fixated on Israel and supported ISIS' ideology. Both Syed and Tashfeen seem to have been radicalized separately. After they met online in 2013, they began discussing jihad and martyrdom.
It was revealed that a suspicious deposit of $28,500 was made in Syed Farook's bank account from WebBank.com on or about 18 November 2015. Though radicalized, the investigators have not found evidence that the couple were ordered to carry out the attack.
According to reports, 14 people were killed in the shooting and 21 others were injured. Loma Linda University Medical Center, the closest hospital to the shooting scene, is treating seven patients who were wounded in the shooting.
On 4 December 2015, the FBI said that it had uncovered evidence of extreme planning and are investigating the shooting as an act of terrorism. The FBI are investigating the phone conversations between at least one of the attackers and other people.
The investigators have video evidence of the couple when they practiced at firing ranges days before the attack.
Syed Farooq may have planned an attack in 2012 with his neighbor Enrique Marquez, who is a convert to Islam. The neighbor bought two of the four assault rifles which were used in the 2015 shooting. Enrique spoke with the federal authorities in the recent days about his relationship with Syed. He told the investigators that he knew Farooq had radical beliefs but did not know that Syed and his wife intended to carry out shootings in December. Enrique has checked himself into a mental health facility.
On 4 December 2015, broadcasters MSNBC and CNN gave its viewers a live look inside the apartment of the couple involved in the mass shooting. The landlord opened the door with reporters behind him and the broadcaster gave the live coverage of the inside of the apartment. The coverage has drawn sharp reactions on social media sites like Twitter. While MSNBC said its reporters were invited inside the apartment and that it shouldn't have broadcast all the images it did, CNN said they made a conscious editorial decision not to show close-up footage of any material that could be considered sensitive or identifiable.
The authorities believed that the couple had planned a much bigger attack, as there are some pipe bombs which were not finished building yet.
A week after the attack, President Barack Obama, in his only third address to the nation from the Oval office said that the attack is an act of terrorism, designed to kill innocent people.
Reactions of the 2016 Presidential election candidates on Twitter.
Our prayers are with the victims, their families, and the first responders in San Bernardino who willingly go into harm’s way to save others — Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) December 2, 2015
Praying for all those victimized by the shootings in San Bernardino, California today. — Governor Christie (@GovChristie) December 2, 2015
My thoughts and prayers are with the shooting victims and their families in San Bernardino. — Dr. Ben Carson (@RealBenCarson) December 2, 2015
Praying for the victims, their families & the San Bernardino first responders in the wake of this tragic shooting. — Jeb Bush (@JebBush) December 2, 2015
California shooting looks very bad. Good luck to law enforcement and God bless. This is when our police are so appreciated! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 2, 2015
Praying for those impacted by the shooting in California today. — Gov. Mike Huckabee (@GovMikeHuckabee) December 2, 2015
My thoughts & prayers go out to those impacted by the shooting in San Bernardino, especially the first responders. -John — John Kasich (@JohnKasich) December 2, 2015
Thoughts & prayers are with #SanBernardino — Lindsey Graham (@GrahamBlog) December 2, 2015
My thoughts and prayers are with the victims, families, and brave first responders during this unspeakable tragedy. — Dr. Rand Paul (@RandPaul) December 2, 2015
Marco Rubio [Nothing on the shooting.] Carly Fiorina [Nothing on shooting] Rick Santorum [Nothing on shooting]
I refuse to accept this as normal. We must take action to stop gun violence now. -H https://t.co/SkKglwQycb — Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) December 2, 2015
Mass shootings are becoming an almost-everyday occurrence in this country. This sickening and senseless gun violence must stop. — Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) December 2, 2015
Horrifying news out of #SanBernardino. Enough is enough: it's time to stand up to the @NRA and enact meaningful gun safety laws — Martin O'Malley (@MartinOMalley) December 2, 2015