What we know about suspect in mass shooting at California bar

Last Updated Nov 8, 2018 11:10 AM EST

VENTURA COUNTY, Calif. — Authorities have identified the suspect in a mass shooting at a Southern California bar as 28-year-old former Marine Ian David Long. Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean says Long is believed to have killed himself late Wednesday at the Borderline Bar and Grill in the city of Thousand Oaks. 

At least 12 people were killed in the attack, including a sheriff’s sergeant who was fatally shot as he tried to enter the bar, a hangout popular with students from nearby California Lutheran University. The gunman was tall and wearing all black with a hood and his face partly covered, witnesses told TV stations. He first shot a security guard standing outside, then went in and opened fire inside the nightclub, the sheriff said.   

California Bar Shooting

People comfort each other as they sit near the scene Thursday, Nov. 8, 2018, in Thousand Oaks, Calif. where a gunman opened fire Wednesday inside a country dance bar crowded with hundreds of people on “college night,” wounding 11 people including a deputy who rushed to the scene. Ventura County sheriff’s spokesman says gunman is dead inside the bar.

Mark J. Terrill / AP

Dean said his department had several previous contacts with Long, including a disturbance call to his home in April, when deputies found him acting irate and irrationally. 

The sheriff said the department’s mental health crisis team was called at that time and concluded that Long did not need to be taken into custody under a “5150” order, an evaluation that determines whether a person needs to be involuntarily held for up to 72 hours because they are a threat to themselves or others. The episode was thought to be possible post-traumatic stress disorder because of his military background.

Dean said the other prior encounters were a traffic accident and an incident when he was the victim of a battery at a bar in 2015. 

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Ian David Long, identified as the gunman in the Borderline Bar shooting in Thousand Oaks, Calif.

The sheriff said the gunman used a Glock 21, a .45-caliber handgun. The weapon holds 10 rounds and one in the chamber, but the gunman’s weapon had an extended magazine that is illegal in California, so it’s unknown how many rounds the weapon held. The ATF is currently investigating how and when the weapon was purchased.

The motive for the attack is still under investigation. The sheriff said it appeared the shooter fired at random once inside the bar and didn’t target victims, but said that is still under investigation. Dean said it’s likely he was familiar with the establishment.

Police recovered evidence at the scene of the shooting that has led them to a house in Newbury Park, California, which is just outside Thousand Oaks, CBS News has learned. A 28-year-old man lives at the house, and police are trying to determine if that man was the shooter.  

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