A gunman killed seven people and wounded seven more in a series of drive-by shootings near the campus of the University of California, Santa Barbara. The shooter was found dead of a gunshot wound in his black BMW after he exchanged fire with law enforcement officials. The spree began in the Isla Vista neighborhood and spread across nine different crime scenes, officials said. They have identified the shooter, but declined to release his name until they have a positive identification; however, social media quickly connected the shootings to a YouTube video called "Elliot Rodger's Retribution," and police confirmed that they believed the video was related to the crime.
Elliot Rodgers' parents apparently took a number of steps in the weeks proceeding Friday night's shooting to try to prevent their son from lashing out. Immediately prior to Rodgers' Friday night shooting rampage at University of California, Santa Barbara that left seven people dead, including himself, his parents opened his email with the 137-page manifesto in which he outlined his mass murder plans. Both his mother and father raced to Santa Barbara from Los Angeles and alerted the police. Months earlier, his mother had found him a therapist and had told the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department she was worried her son might be threat. Police had three cnounters with Rodgers in the past ten months, and they described him as “polite, courteous.” Tragically, they never picked up on any of the red flags. Rodgers reportedly first stabbed to death his three roommates, killed two women and injured one at a sorority house, and then fired at random people before appearing to take his own life. In addition to the seven fatalities, 13 people were injured. Police say Rodgers was found with a Glock 34 and two Sig Sauer P226s and more than 400 rounds of ammunition.
- Can tragedies like this be prevented? If so, how? If not, why?
- How would you characterize the efforts of his parents? Did they do enough to prevent this event? What about the police?