THE LATEST on deadly shootings in Northern California (all times local):
Authorities say a gunman tried to get into rooms at a California elementary school with the intent of shooting children but that workers initiated a lockdown that saved lives.
Tehama County Assistant Sheriff Phil Johnston says school officials heard shots being fired and immediately locked down Rancho Tehama School in a tiny, rural town Tuesday.
He says it was “monumental” that school workers took the action they did and there is no doubt in his mind they saved the lives of countless children.
Authorities say the gunman, who hasn’t been identified, killed four people and wounded at least 10 others, including a child after he opened fire at the school.
California sheriff says gunman tried to get into rooms at elementary school to shoot more kids, but lockdown saved lives.
Authorities say one of four victims killed by a gunman on a shooting rampage was a neighbor he was accused of assaulting in January.
Tehama County Assistant Sheriff Phil Johnston says the neighbor had a restraining order against the gunman. He says the neighbor was a woman but gave no other details.
Authorities say the gunman, who hasn’t been identified, killed four people Tuesday and wounded at least nine others, including a child at Rancho Tehama School.
At least a dozen evidence technicians wearing white coveralls and yellow boots are working at an elementary school in Northern California that was attacked by a gunman on a shooting rampage.
Authorities say the gunman, who has not been identified, killed four people Tuesday and wounded at least 10 others, including a child at Rancho Tehama School.
Tehama County Assistant Sheriff Phil Johnston says the gunman opened fire onto the school and at six other spots throughout the rural community “without provocation” before two officers fatally shot him.
The school, hidden behind by pine trees, was blocked off with yellow crime-scene tape as FBI agents helped process the scene.
A gunman driving stolen vehicles and choosing his targets at random opened fire “without provocation” in a tiny rural Northern California town Tuesday, killing four people and wounding at least 10 others, including a student at an elementary school, before police shot him dead, authorities said.
The gunfire began shortly before 8 a.m. in the rural community of Rancho Tehama Reserve, a homeowners association of modest houses and trailers in rolling oak woodlands dotted with grazing cattle about 130 miles north of Sacramento.
Police offered no immediate word on the assailant’s motive, but a sheriff’s official said the shooter’s neighbors had reported a domestic violence incident a day earlier.
Brian Flint told the Record Searchlight newspaper in the city of Redding that his neighbor, whom he knows only as Kevin, was the gunman and that his roommate was among the victims. He said the shooter also stole his truck.
“The crazy thing is that the neighbor has been shooting a lot of bullets lately, hundreds of rounds, large magazines,” Flint said. “We made it aware that this guy is crazy and he’s been threatening us.”
Tehama County Assistant Sheriff Phil Johnston said officials received multiple 911 calls about gunfire at an intersection of two dirt roads in the upper reaches of the sparsely populated neighborhood. Minutes later, more calls reporting shots flooded in from different locations, including a small elementary school.
“It was very clear at the onset that we had an individual that was randomly picking targets,” Johnston said.
Witnesses reported hearing gunshots and children screaming at Rancho Tehama Elementary School, which has one class of students from kindergarten through fifth grade.
Johnston said one student was shot at the school and flown by helicopter to a hospital, and another student was wounded in a car on the way to school. He said no one was killed there.
“The shooter targeted the school from outside the school and shot inside the school with multiple rounds,” Johnston said.
The assistant sheriff said the school locked its doors, and students and staff “sheltered in place” until deputies ushered them onto a school bus and led it to safety under heavy guard.
Johnston said authorities believe they know the identity of the shooter but declined to release his name pending further investigation. He appears to have fired a semiautomatic rifle and two handguns at seven locations, authorities said.
The shooter initially stole a neighbor’s truck and then carjacked a second vehicle before two deputies exchanged gunfire with him, Johnston said. No officers were hurt.
Salvador Tello said the gunman fired at a truck in front of him as he went to drop off his three children at school. Tello said he was about three blocks from the school when bullets made “big holes” in the truck.
He said he forced his children to duck down, slammed his vehicle into reverse and headed to the children’s grandmother’s house.
“I put my kids down and put my truck in reverse and went out,” he said. “I don’t believe it, because I wake up, take my kids, feed them cereal and put them in the truck and say, ‘Let’s go to school like a normal day.'”
On the way, he said he saw an apparent gunshot victim and police at another scene.
The rural subdivision is described on its website as a “quiet private country community” where “the people are friendly and the pace is relaxed.” The homeowner association’s website says there are 2,016 lots in the community and 1,346 voting members.
“It’s pretty quiet,” said 14-year resident Vince Broff, who lives about a mile from the school but was kept away from his home for more than three hours.
Before a law enforcement crackdown, marijuana farming was prevalent in the isolated area several years ago down and appeared to attract some crime, but “nothing this serious,” Broff said.
Parents are in distress stuck behind road block not knowing the status of their kids at school in Rancho Tehama where the shooter ended up. pic.twitter.com/kf7afIPr7z
Rancho Tehama man talks about incident. pic.twitter.com/uy1l06fw1K
— Jim Schultz (@JimSchultz_RS) November 14, 2017
Rancho Tehama Road still closed. pic.twitter.com/aLZYjeND5v
— Jim Schultz (@JimSchultz_RS) November 14, 2017
Resident Casey Burnett said gunman was driving around and shooting randomly from his car. pic.twitter.com/eZUdcaj1f0
— Jim Schultz (@JimSchultz_RS) November 14, 2017
A shooter in Northern California has killed at least four people in a violent rampage that began at a home and ultimately included seven locations, including an elementary school, officials say.
The shooter was killed by police, bringing the total death toll to five. Ten people have been hospitalized, authorities say.
At least two children are among the wounded — a student at Rancho Tehama Elementary School in Tehama County was shot, and another child was shot in a truck along the road, according to county Assistant Sheriff Phil Johnston. A woman driving the truck was also shot; all three are being treated.
Enloe Medical Center in Chico tells NPR that it has received five patients, three of whom have been treated and released.
The first calls about the shooting came in shortly before 8 a.m. local time on Tuesday, Johnston told reporters. They described a shooting on Bobcat Lane; calls from other sites soon came in, including the elementary school.
The gunman took a vehicle from Bobcat Lane, started shooting, and then crashed the vehicle. He then stole a second vehicle and was shooting once again when two law enforcement officers killed him.
The gunman appeared to be “randomly picking targets,” and no motive has been identified, Johnston said.
He said the suspect, whose name has not been released, was involved in a “domestic violence incident” reported by neighbors before the shooting.
A “semi-automatic rifle and two handguns” have been recovered, Johnston said.
NPR’s Nate Rott spoke to resident Tiffany Rodgers, who says she knows almost every student at the elementary school and heard the shooting from a nearby cafe.
Rodgers told Nate that she could hear “over 100 rounds go off” and heard screaming.
The shooting is “just devastating” for the small, tight-knit community, she says.
Reporter Sara Stinson, calling Action News Now from the police roadblock, told the news channel there is a shot-up, taped-off truck on the road, and several worried parents unable to get past the roadblock and struggling to find a cellphone signal.
The Redding Record Searchlight spoke to several witnesses, including one man who told his children to take cover:
“Rancho Tehama resident Salvador Tello said he was taking his three children to school when the gunman fired at a truck in front of him.
“He said he saw bullets hit the truck in front of him, so he made his children get down and put his truck in reverse.
“Tello said that, as he left, he saw a woman lying dead in the street with her husband next to her, apparently wounded.”
Law enforcement officers from a range of agencies have responded to the incident, including the Highway Patrol and the FBI. Johnston said there were more than 100 officers helping cover the multiple scenes.
“It’s a very sad day for us here in Tehama County,” he told Action News Now, tearing up.
Rancho Tehama Elementary is a small school, serving students in pre-kindergarten through fifth grade. There are just four teachers on staff; each teaches at least two grades, according to the school newsletter.
Tehama County is a rural community about a hundred miles north of Sacramento. The largest town in the county, Red Bluff, has a population of about 14,000, according to the Census Bureau.
Gov. Jerry Brown issued a statement offering condolences to families who lost loved ones in “today’s violence in Tehama County, which shockingly involved schoolchildren.”
This is a breaking news story. As often happens in situations like these, some information reported early may turn out to be inaccurate. We’ll move quickly to correct the record and we’ll only point to the best information we have at the time.