14 Killed in California Shooting, ‘Terrorism’ Motive Possible
At least 14 people have been shot dead and 17 injured in a shooting at a San Bernardino community center in California.
Police, who are now investigating the possibility of terrorism, have identified the suspects behind the deadly attack as US-born Syed Rizwan Farook, 28, and Tashfeen Malik, 27.
The two suspects were shot dead earlier after police opened fire on their black SUV which had been identified as the getaway vehicle.
The attack, which the FBI is also investigating as a potential terrorism incident, is the deadliest mass shooting in the US since 2012 when 26 were killed at an elementary school in Newton, Connecticut.
According to NBC, authorities found three explosive devices at the center where the shooting took place.
The Inland Regional Center, where the shooting took place,helps adults with disabilities and mental health issues. Police said that the gunmen “came prepared to do what they did, as if they were on a mission.”
According to the Los Angeles Times, the attack took place at a holiday party for county health workers in San Bernardino.
San Bernardino Police chief identifies two deceased suspects:
San Bernardino police say that Farook left “the party early, under some circumstances that were described as angry"
Syed Farook, an environmental specialist for the San Bernardino County, was described as possibly engaged or married to Tashfeen Malik.
In a news conference, the brother-in-law of Syed Farook said that he was “shocked” and that he had no idea Farook would carry out such an attack.
The news conference was organised by the Council on American-Islamic Relations, reported NBC News.
The Los Angeles Times reported that Farook had been at a party at the center before storming off angrily after an altercation. The newspaper also said that Farook had recently traveled to Saudi Arabia and then returned to the USA with a woman he had met online. The newspaper continued that Farook and the woman, who could be Malik, had a baby and had appeared to be “living the American dream.”
Farook’s father said his son was “very religious” and that he was shocked to learn of his son’s possible involvement in the attack.
“He [Syed Farook] was very religious,” said Farook’s father. “He would go to work, come back, go to pray, come back. He’s Muslim.”