College Night Massacre: California bar terrorist identified as 29-year-old Marine Corps veteran
The terrorist who massacred 12 people at a country music bar in southern California on Wednesday night has been identified as 29-year-old Marine Corps veteran David Ian Long.
Long had been cleared by mental health experts after an incident in his home in April, sheriffs revealed on Thursday morning.
The terrorist stormed the Borderline Bar and Grill wearing a black trenchcoat armed with a pistol equipped with an extended magazine and smoke grenades and began targeting people as young as 18.
He killed 11 people inside the bar and one of the first cops on the scene before killing himself.
Survivors from the shooting said he looked ‘like he knew what he was doing’ as he repeatedly fired his legally purchased Glock .45 handgun.
As dozens ran for their lives, hid beneath pool tables and used bar stools to shatter the windows to escape, Long continued firing and also threw smoke grenades to confuse the crowds.
When the first police officers arrived at the scene three minutes later, Long shot one of them multiple times before shooting himself.
While authorities work to identify the victims and contact their family, one name has been released by the sheriff’s office: longtime Sgt. Ron Helus.
Helus served for 29 years in the sheriff’s office and was planning to retire soon. He was one of the first responders on the scene and is being hailed a hero.
Authorities said he was shot multiple times as he entered the bar and later died at the hospital.
“He went in to save lives, to save other people,” Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean said. “He was totally committed, he gave his all, and tonight, as I told his wife, he died a hero.”
By the time SWAT teams arrived, the terrorist was dead. His body was found in an office inside the bar.