Published: Fri, November 09, 2018
Life&Culture | By Rose Hansen

Sydney footballer reveals horror at being caught up in California shooting

Sydney footballer reveals horror at being caught up in California shooting

Using a smoke bomb and a handgun, the hooded Marine combat veteran dressed all in black opened fire during college night at the country music bar in Southern California, killing 12 people and sending hundreds fleeing in terror before apparently taking his own life, authorities said.

President Donald Trump ordered the United States flag at the White House and other government buildings to be flown at half-staff following the shooting, which came just 10 days after a gunman killed 11 worshippers at a synagogue in Pittsburgh.

"They found people hiding in restrooms, people hiding in attics", Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean said.

Helus was a 29-year veteran looking forward to retirement in the next year or two, and leaves behind an adult son in addition to his wife, grieving colleagues said.

"He died tonight going in to try to save others and paid the ultimate sacrifice", Dean said. They found Long "somewhat irate, acting a little irrationally", Dean said. The gunman is believed to be among the fatalities, the Ventura County Sheriff's Office told CNN affiliate KABC.

Dean described the scene inside the bar as "like hell". "There is blood everywhere and the suspect is part of that, and I didn't want to get that close and disturb the scene and possibly disturb the investigation". "I just started hearing these big pops. Pop, pop, pop. There was probably three or four, I hit the ground", John Hedge, at the bar with his stepfather, told CNN affiliate KABC.

After a man fatally shot 11 worshipers at a Pittsburgh synagogue last month, US President Donald Trump said their deaths could have been prevented if there had been an armed guard inside the temple.

"Here are my words: I want gun control, " said Susan Schmidt-Orfanos, her voice shaking with grief and rage.

Trump said Thursday on Twitter that he has been "fully briefed on the awful shooting".

Numerous estimated 150 patrons at the Borderline dived under tables, ran for exits, broke through windows or hid in the attic and bathrooms, authorities and witnesses said. They had chairs and threw them out the window, and they were able to take me and my girlfriend out the window and carried us out here.

Long had minor run-ins with the law previously, including a traffic accident and a bar fight, law enforcement officials said Thursday.

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"We're going to pursue the leads that develop from that evidence, wherever they take us, to identify any possible motivation, paint a picture of the frame of mind of the subject, identify any possible radicalization", Delacourt said Thursday.

The bar is near several colleges, and is a popular spot for students Wednesday nights.

Borderline, a Western-themed establishment known to regularly host country, salsa and swing dancing nights, was hosting a college country night on Wednesday evening.

An unnamed witness told the newspaper that someone ran into the bar at around 11.30pm local time (3.30pm Singapore time) and started shooting with what looked to be a black pistol.

Whitler said then she heard "Get up, he's coming!" and people trampled on each other to get out.

People "dog-piled on top of each other" trying to hide in silence, she said.

Kelly is a regular at the bar and was inside for around an hour when he heard the first shots.

There was no screaming, she said.

Wennerstrom, a student at nearby California State University, Channel Islands, soon followed them to safety.

"This is a very close-knit community", Kuredjian said, adding that Thousand Oaks - north and west of Los Angeles - is a "pro-law-enforcement community" as well.

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