A Marine Corps veteran who had served in Afghanistan fatally shot at least 12 people Wednesday night when he stormed a crowded country and western dance hall in Thousand Oaks, Calif., the authorities said.
The Ventura County sheriff, Geoff Dean, said that the gunman, Ian David Long of nearby Newbury Park, Calif., apparently took his own life after being confronted by officers responding to the Wednesday night attack. One officer, Sgt. Ron Helus, was killed when he entered the building to help. The gunman used a .45-caliber handgun that he purchased legally. It had been outfitted with an extended magazine.
The shooting came just over a year after 58 people were killed at a country music festival in Las Vegas when a gunman opened fire from a high-rise hotel room. There was an eerie parallel between the two shootings as some of the same people who emerged from the bar, the Borderline Bar & Grill, described having survived the shooting on the Las Vegas Strip. (Read more from “California Shooting Leaves 12 Dead at Bar” HERE)