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A Thousand Oaks bar was full of life before it became the site of another mass shooting

A Thousand Oaks bar was full of life before it became the site of another mass shooting

It was simply after 11 p.m. Wednesday night time when the man in black arrived at the Borderline Bar & Grill.

It was “College Night,” and the crowd inside numbered someplace between 150 and 200, many of them college students at close by schools and universities.

The person, who police have recognized as 28-year-old Marine veteran Ian David Lengthy, stormed the bar with a Glock .45, opening hearth on these inside seemingly at random.

When it was over, 12 victims and the shooter have been lifeless. Greater than a dozen others have been injured.

The victims included a Ventura County Sheriff’s deputy, Sgt. Ron Helus, one of the first responders to stories of photographs fired at the membership.

Hellus arrived at about 11:20, at the similar time as an unidentified California Freeway Patrol officer. Listening to gunshots inside, the pair ran ran in. Hellus was shot a number of occasions before the CHP officer was capable of drag him out.

MORE: See full protection of the Thousand Oaks mass shooting

Inside minutes, further regulation enforcement officers started to reach. At 11:40, police and sheriff’s deputies from a half-dozen close by businesses entered the membership and found our bodies of victims, and Lengthy, who authorities consider took his personal life.

Additionally they discovered survivors huddled in restrooms and the membership’s attic, nonetheless hiding from the shooter.

“Like Hell,” was how Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean answered when requested how the scene appeared when authorities entered.

Many of the lifeless have been younger adults from close by schools, together with Cal Lutheran, Pepperdine, Moorpark and Cal State Channel Islands. No less than some are survivors of another mass shooting – the 2017 bloodbath at the Route 91 Harvest Pageant music present in Las Vegas, which took 58 lives.

  • Individuals consolation one another as they stand close to the scene Thursday, Nov. eight, 2018, in Thousand Oaks, Calif. the place a gunman opened hearth Wednesday inside a rustic dance bar crowded with tons of of individuals on “college night,” wounding 11 individuals together with a deputy who rushed to the scene. Ventura County sheriff’s spokesman says gunman is lifeless inside the bar. (AP Photograph/Mark J. Terrill)

  • THOUSAND OAKS, CA – NOVEMBER 08: Younger individuals speak after the procession carrying the physique of Ventura County Sheriff Sgt. Ron Helus, who was killed in a mass shooting at the Borderline Bar and Grill, left Los Robles Hospital on November eight, 2018 in Thousand Oaks, California. 12 individuals have died together with the sergeant plus the gunman. (Photograph by David McNew/Getty Pictures)

  • Individuals awaiting phrase of family members from the Borderline Bar & Grill shooting in Thousand Oaks at the Alex Fiore Teen Middle in Thousand Oaks, CA. 13 individuals together with a sheriff deputy and the shooter have been killed in a mass shooting at the bar in a single day. (Photograph by David Crane, Los Angeles Day by day Information)

  • THOUSAND OAKS, CA – NOVEMBER 08: “Just an American who owns a flag,” says David Candiliere, 73, middle, whereas he watches a procession for Ventura County Sheriff Sgt. Ron Helus outdoors Los Robles Hospital & Medical Middle in Thousand Oaks on Thursday morning, November eight, 2018 with Michael Gonzales, 20. Helus died at the hospital after getting into the scene of a mass shooting throughout school night time at a Thousand Oaks nightclub. Authorities consider Ian David Lengthy, a 28-year-old veteran, is the shooter and amongst the 13 lifeless. (Photograph by Sarah Reingewirtz/Digital First Media/Pasadena Star-Information by way of Getty Photographs)

  • Individuals consolation one another as they sit close to the scene Thursday, Nov. eight, 2018, in Thousand Oaks, Calif. the place a gunman opened hearth Wednesday inside a rustic dance bar crowded with a whole lot of individuals on “school night time,”. (AP Photograph/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Individuals stroll away from the scene Thursday, Nov. eight, 2018, in Thousand Oaks, Calif. the place a gunman opened hearth Wednesday inside a rustic dance bar crowded with a whole lot of individuals on “college night,” wounding 11 individuals together with a deputy who rushed to the scene. Ventura County sheriff’s spokesman says gunman is lifeless inside the bar. (AP Photograph/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Some of the greater than 500 Individuals ready to provide blood at La Reina Excessive Faculty in Thousand Oaks, CA. Residents turned out to assist victims of the mass shooting at the Borderline Bar & Grill. 13 individuals together with a sheriff deputy and the shooter have been killed in a mass shooting at the bar in a single day. (Photograph by David Crane, Los Angeles Day by day Information/SCNG)

  • Individuals awaiting phrase of family members from the Borderline Bar & Grill shooting in Thousand Oaks at the Alex Fiore Teen Middle in Thousand Oaks, CA. 13 individuals together with a sheriff deputy and the shooter have been killed in a mass shooting at the bar in a single day. (Photograph by David Crane, Los Angeles Every day Information/SCNG)

  • Deputy’s hug outdoors the Ventura County Medical Examiners workplace on Thursday, November eight, 2018 after the physique of Ventura County Sheriff Sgt. Ron Helus was escorted from Los Robles Hospital & Medical Middle. Helus was shot and killed after getting into the scene of a mass shooting throughout school night time at Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks on Wednesday night time. Authorities consider Ian David Lengthy, a 28-year-old veteran, is the shooter and amongst the 13 lifeless. (Photograph by Paul Bersebach, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • Relations depart the Ventura County Medical Examiners workplace on Thursday, November eight, 2018 after the physique of Ventura County Sheriff Sgt. Ron Helus was escorted from Los Robles Hospital & Medical Middle. Helus was shot and killed after getting into the scene of a mass shooting throughout school night time at Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks on Wednesday night time. Authorities consider Ian David Lengthy, a 28-year-old veteran, is the shooter and amongst the 13 lifeless. (Photograph by Paul Bersebach, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • Sheriff’s division personnel salute as the physique of Ventura County Sheriff Sgt. Ron Helus is delivered to the Ventura County Medical Examiners workplace on Thursday, November eight, 2018. Helus was shot and killed after getting into the scene of a mass shooting throughout school night time at Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks on Wednesday night time. Authorities consider Ian David Lengthy, a 28-year-old veteran, is the shooter and amongst the 13 lifeless. (Photograph by Paul Bersebach, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • Sheriff’s division personnel salute as the physique of Ventura County Sheriff Sgt. Ron Helus is delivered to the Ventura County Medical Examiners workplace on Thursday, November eight, 2018. Helus was shot and killed after getting into the scene of a mass shooting throughout school night time at Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks on Wednesday night time. Authorities consider Ian David Lengthy, a 28-year-old veteran, is the shooter and amongst the 13 lifeless. (Photograph by Paul Bersebach, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • A forensics workforce works the scene Thursday, Nov. eight, 2018, in Thousand Oaks, Calif. the place a gunman opened hearth Wednesday inside a rustic dance bar crowded with a whole lot of individuals on “college night,” wounding 11 individuals together with a deputy who rushed to the scene. Ventura County sheriff’s spokesman says gunman is lifeless inside the bar. (AP Photograph/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Individuals hug outdoors the Borderline Bar and Grill, the place a mass shooting occurred on November eight, 2018 in Thousand Oaks, California. A minimum of twelve individuals have died, together with a Ventura County Sheriffs Division sergeant, plus the gunman. (OnScene.TV)

  • Jason Coffman shows a photograph of his son Cody outdoors the Thousand Oaks Teen Middle. (Photograph by Frederic J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Photographs)

  • Individuals hug outdoors the Borderline Bar and Grill, the place a mass shooting occurred on November eight, 2018 in Thousand Oaks, California. No less than twelve individuals have died, together with a Ventura County Sheriffs Division sergeant, plus the gunman. (OnScene.TV)

  • Police safe the Borderline Bar and Grill, the place a mass shooting occurred on November eight, 2018 in Thousand Oaks, California. 13 individuals have died, together with a Ventura County Sheriffs Division sergeant and the gunman. (OnScene.TV)

  • A man sporting a cowboy hat locations a t-shirt with the phrase “Security” on a make shift memorial close to the scene of the Borderline Bar and Grill the place a gunman opened hearth Wednesday night inside a rustic music bar, killing a number of individuals together with a responding sheriff’s sergeant on Thursday, November eight, 2018 in Thousand Oaks, California. (Photograph by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-Information/SCNG)

  • A thousand Oaks volunteer locations a bouquet of flowers on a make shift memorial close to the scene of the Borderline Bar and Grill the place a gunman opened hearth Wednesday night inside a rustic music bar, killing a number of individuals together with a responding sheriff’s sergeant on Thursday, November eight, 2018 in Thousand Oaks, California. (Photograph by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-Information/SCNG)

  • FBI walks previous two vans close to the scene of the Borderline Bar and Grill the place a gunman opened hearth Wednesday night inside a rustic music bar, killing a number of individuals together with a responding sheriff’s sergeant on Thursday, November eight, 2018 in Thousand Oaks, California. (Photograph by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-Information/SCNG)

  • A man sporting a cowboy hat pays his respects at a make shift memorial close to the scene of the Borderline Bar and Grill the place a gunman opened hearth Wednesday night inside a rustic music bar, killing a number of individuals together with a responding sheriff’s sergeant on Thursday, November eight, 2018 in Thousand Oaks, California. (Photograph by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-Information/SCNG)

  • Officers collect close to the scene of the Borderline Bar and Grill the place a gunman opened hearth Wednesday night inside a rustic music bar, killing a number of individuals together with a responding sheriff’s sergeant on Thursday, November eight, 2018 in Thousand Oaks, California. (Photograph by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-Information/SCNG)

  • FBI walks previous two vans close to the scene of the Borderline Bar and Grill the place a gunman opened hearth Wednesday night inside a rustic music bar, killing a number of individuals together with a responding sheriff’s sergeant on Thursday, November eight, 2018 in Thousand Oaks, California. (Photograph by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-Information/SCNG)

One of these at the membership was 22-year-old Justin Meek, a current graduate of Cal Lutheran College in Thousand Oaks.

The varsity confirmed Meek’s demise Thursday, and a few social media studies stated he was working as the membership’s bouncer on Wednesday night time, including that he saved “multiple lives, trying to get people out… after being shot first at the door.”

Ventura County Sheriff Dean stated it was unclear whether or not Lengthy had weapons aside from the Glock, which had an unlawful prolonged journal, however he confirmed that Lengthy used at the least one different weapon throughout the assault – a smoke bomb.

Survivors stated the smoke and noise added to the chaos and steered that was Lengthy’s intent.

“At one point, when I was on the ground, I turned around and saw a smoke bomb … a lot of sparks and just smoke,” stated Sarah DeSon, a scholar at Cal Lutheran who was in the membership when the shooting began.

“I said, ‘OK, someone had a plan to kill a lot of people.’”

Moments later, DeSon stated, she obtained out of the membership and began operating. At one level she fell, and whereas on the floor, her panic rose.

“I thought, ‘What if he’s behind you? If he is, you’re dead.’”

As DeSon and others sneaked out via the membership’s doorways, others used bar stools to interrupt home windows and crawl via the openings.

Witnesses stated some victims, corresponding to Meek and Sgt. Helus, tried to assist different victims.

A lady outdoors the membership stated she noticed survivors huddled behind bushes and automobiles, together with some she described as “half-naked” as a result of they’d used their clothes to sluggish the bleeding of others who had been shot.

A number of off-duty regulation enforcement officers have been amongst the patrons. Witnesses stated they labored to assist victims and shield others from being shot. One survivor’s mum or dad stated an officer stood between Lengthy and a few patrons.

Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, who on Tuesday was elected to be the state’s subsequent governor, ordered all flags at half-staff in California.

“Last night’s horrific shooting in Thousand Oaks is nothing short of a tragedy,” he stated. “Our hearts are with all those whose loved ones were stolen from them too soon, by yet another senseless act of gun violence.”

President Donald Trump thanked regulation enforcement and provided prayers for victims and their households, tweeting, “Great bravery shown by police…  God bless all of the victims and families of the victims.”

I’ve been absolutely briefed on the horrible shooting in California. Regulation Enforcement and First Responders, along with the FBI, are on scene. 13 individuals, right now, have been reported lifeless. Likewise, the shooter is lifeless, together with the first police officer to enter the bar….

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November eight, 2018

….Nice bravery proven by police. California Freeway Patrol was on scene inside three minutes, with first officer to enter shot quite a few occasions. That Sheriff’s Sergeant died in the hospital. God bless all of the victims and households of the victims. Thanks to Regulation Enforcement.

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November eight, 2018

Trump was referencing Helus and the as-yet unidentified CHP officer, who have been the first two to reach at the scene.

Sheriff Dean stated Helus was speaking to his spouse over the telephone, as he did a number of occasions a shift, when he discovered of the 911 calls from the membership, telling her “I gotta go. I love you.”

Once they obtained to the membership, Helus and the CHP officer heard gunshots and each entered. As soon as inside, Dean stated, the pair “immediately exchanged gunfire” with the shooter. When Helus was struck a number of occasions, the CHP officer pulled him out to attempt to save his life. Helus was pronounced lifeless at a close-by hospital.

Dean – who will depart his elected place as Ventura County Sheriff on Friday – stated Helus, 54, was a 29-year veteran who deliberate to retire subsequent yr. He’s survived by his spouse and grownup son.

Whereas Lengthy’s motive is unknown, Dean stated he didn’t assume the option to shoot at the Borderline was utterly random.

In April, deputies have been referred to as to Lengthy’s Newbury Park house as a result of Lengthy was appearing “somewhat irate, a little irrationally,” Dean stated. However the deputies and a psychological well being crew additionally referred to as to the scene didn’t really feel at the time that Lengthy was certified to be taken in on an involuntary maintain.

Neighbors stated Lengthy, who lived in Orange County before shifting to Newbury Park, suffered from post-traumatic stress dysfunction.

The Marine Corps stated Thursday that Lengthy had been deployed to Afghanistan in 2010 and served as a machine gunner. At the time that Lengthy served, the Marine Corps was sustaining heavy casualties in the area. Lengthy had two army service awards, together with one which army officers say is given just for “outstanding heroism in action.”

DeSon, who noticed the smoke bomb, stated she was “grateful, so grateful,” to have survived. She added that her plan was to go residence and, as soon as there, “I’m giving my family a lot of hugs.”