As it happened: California shootings

Key Points

  • A gunman has killed six people in drive-by shooting near Californian city of Santa Barbara
  • The suspected gunman has been found dead in his crashed car, with a gunshot wound to the head
  • Police investigating link to misogynist YouTube video
  • Officials say they have evidence suggesting the shooting was "premeditated mass murder"
  • The shootings took place in Isla Vista, near the University of California-Santa Barbara
  • All times BST (GMT +1)

    Fast-paced developments in the US city of California, where a gunman has killed at least six people in a drive-by shooting near the University of California-Santa Barbara.


    The shootings took place late on Friday night in several locations in Isla Vista - where two thirds of the residents are students.


    The gunman was later found dead in his car, with a gunshot wound to the head.

    Suzanna Standring

    writes: My son was there last night. The car driven by the gunman finally crashed right outside his apartment. The emergency alert from the authorities didn't come until 45 minutes after it was all over. Thankfully he, his girlfriend and all their friends were alerted by social media and by texts from friends. When will the insanity stop?


    Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown says there is evidence that the shooting was premeditated.


    "We have obtained and are currently analysing videotaped evidence that suggests that this atrocity was a premeditated mass murder," Sheriff Brown told reporters.

    Sheriff Bill Brown

    Eyewitnesses describe a black BMW speeding through the streets, spraying bullets at people in the university neighbourhood.


    Police officials say it is not immediately clear whether the gunman was killed by gunfire or if he committed suicide.


    In addition to the six dead, police confirm in a statement that seven others were wounded in the attack. They say they will not reveal the identity of the victims until the next of kin have been informed.


    One woman, who witnessed the attack, tells Associated Press she didn't realise at first it was a real gun: "I just thought it was, like, an Airsoft [replica firearm or air gun] or something. So I was, like: hey, who was that? And I turned around and started walking the other way. And then, like, he shot."


    Eyewitness Mya Thornburgh tweeted this picture of the coroner's van leaving the scene.

    Coroner's van

    Earlier, police said they were investigating any possible connection to a video posted on the internet on Friday in which a young man complains of years of rejected by women and threatens to take revenge.

    13:53: Oliver Standring, student in Santa Barbara

    told the BBC: "I live one street away and didn't actually see anything but my friends thought it was fireworks. Then we started getting reports via social media from other students who were around the area who said there were "people down". Everyone stayed where they were last night. We got an email from the police department at around midnight which confirmed that the shooter was dead and there was no longer a threat."


    Sheriff Bill Brown praises the swift police response, which he says saved lives: "There's no question in my mind at this point that their resolute actions and valour in doing so very well may have prevented further loss of life and injury."


    The gunman fatally shot six people before his car crashed and he was found dead inside. Authorities are yet to confirm whether he was killed by deputies in the exchange of fire or died of a self-inflicted wound.


    The University of California-Santa Barbara has more than 20,000 students on its books and employs more than 1,000 staff.


    Eyewitnesses to the Santa Barbara shooting describe the scene of the attack. "I ran away for my life," says one.

    Eyewitness to attack, 24 May 2014
    14:04: Dylan Fontillas

    posted this message on Twitter several hours ago: "I was no more than 2 feet from the dude who took 2 to the chest. U don't kno fear til ur on the ground crawling away from some1 shooting at u."


    Police say they were alerted to the drive-by shooting at around 21:30 on Friday (05:30 BST).


    The gunman exchanged several rounds of gunfire with police, before fleeing in his vehicle and eventually crashing into a parked vehicle, according to a police statement.

    Police in the streets of the Isla Vista area

    The current population of the Californian city of Santa Barbara is around 90,000.


    The last major shooting in the city took place in 2006 when a female ex-postal worker shot dead six people at a sorting office in California, before committing suicide. Another person later died in hospital.


    Photos show some of the destruction caused by the shooting. A restaurant and car near the campus of the University of Santa Barbara on Friday night were damaged.

    Bullet holes in restaurant window in Isla Vista on 23 May 2014
    Smashed car window in Isla Vista on 24 May 2014

    A semi-automatic handgun was recovered from the scene near the University of California, Santa Barbara.


    Investigators know the gunman's name but say they cannot release it until the relatives have been informed.


    A student, who witnessed the shooting, says he saw at least one woman killed and another critically injured. Michael Vitak told local KEYT-TV: "I heard shots, scream, pain... All emotions. I hope she is going to be fine.''

    14:57: Monica Lopez

    who works at the university campus, told the BBC: "I was there afterwards. The whole thing took about 10 minutes, apparently. There weren't that many people about. I talked to several people who worked in different bars who said people were running in for shelter. Afterwards, there were quite a few streets blocked off. After the sheriff's conference, I think everyone was surprised and very sad. The death toll was higher than people had heard."


    The shooting occurred towards the end of the academic year, with some students preparing for graduation ceremonies and others due to take final exams.


    This map shows the key areas surrounding the shooting.

    Santa Barbara map
    15:25: Noah

    a student, told the BBC: "I was going for a bike ride and was close to the deli where the shooting took place. I saw a black car drive by and then I heard what sounded like five or six rounds being fired into the shop. First I thought it was fireworks or the car itself so I didn't know how to react. When I saw people literally running for their lives and one girl drop to the ground, I started riding as fast as I could and got out of there."

    15:30: Noah

    continues: "When I got home I saw a lot of cops. I got an email from the cops at 22:18 which read, 'UCSB emergency, shots fired in IV, two detained, investigation ongoing.' At 00:12 there was another email from police despatch to UCSB students which read, 'at this time there is no further threat. Everyone is encouraged to stay indoors.'"


    Police say they have identified nine separate crime scenes in the Isla Vista area.

    Police and emergency personnel at the scene of a drive-by shooting in Isla Vista on 23 May 2014.
    CBS Sports Radio host Doug Gottleib

    tweets: islavista is just about the coolest college town I've ever been too--- prayers to all you #Gauchos


    We're wrapping up our live coverage of the drive-by shooting in Isla Vista, which left seven people dead - including the gunman - and seven others wounded. Police say they have preliminarily identified the suspect gunmen but won't release the name until relatives have been informed. You can follow our news story for all of the latest developments.


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