This is a breaking news story. This post will be frequently updated as new information becomes available.
A shooting at the Inland Regional Center, a center that serves people with developmental disabilities in San Bernardino, California, left at least 14 people dead and 18 injured, San Bernardino Police Chief Jarrod Burguan said Wednesday.
Officials have named two suspects — Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik, both of whom were killed in a firefight with police following a car chase. One police officer was wounded, and a third, unnamed suspect is in custody. The suspects who were killed had assault rifles and handguns. At least two of those weapons were purchased legally, the Los Angeles Times reported.
Obviously at minimum we have a domestic-type terrorism situation that occurred here.
According to CNN, Farook and Malik were married for two years, and had a 6-month-old child. Farook, a Muslim American, was an environmental health specialist with the San Bernardino County health department.
Burguan said that the suspects had fled, “potentially in a dark-colored SUV.” He said authorities do not yet know the motive, although there is some speculation it started as a workplace dispute. What they do know, however, was that the gunmen “came prepared to do what they did, as if they were on a mission.”
“Obviously at minimum we have a domestic-type terrorism situation that occurred here,” he added.
About a half hour after the incident began, CBS News tweeted that a bomb squad had been deployed inside the building to attempt to defuse an “apparent device,” though the presence of an explosive was unconfirmed. News cameras in helicopters above the center showed crowds of people evacuating the building with their hands over their heads.
One of the people who evacuated was reportedly the wife of a man named Marcos Aguilera, who told CBS News what his wife told him about the incident.
“She said the guys came in next to her office and I guess started shooting,” he said. “They locked themselves in, in her office. They seen bodies on the floor and she said right now ambulances are taking people out in stretchers.”
— CBS New York (@CBSNewYork) December 2, 2015
A spokesperson for the Loma Linda University Medical Center — a hospital located near the scene of the shooting — confirmed at a press conference Wednesday that four patients had been admitted there, and that at least three more were anticipated. Though she would not comment on the patients’ conditions, she said the hospital’s trauma center was prepared to treat multiple mass shooting victims.
“We always see this happening in other states and it’s hitting very close to home right now,” spokesperson Briana Pastorino said, adding that the hospital has held drills for mass shooting situations in the past. “This can happen anywhere, and we have to be prepared physically and mentally for these types of situations.”
California Gov. Jerry Brown and President Obama were each briefed on the situation, and Obama issued a brief response in an interview with CBS News on Wednesday afternoon. He said that while there was not yet information on the motive of the shooters, “The one thing we do know is that we have a pattern now of mass shootings in this country that has no parallel anywhere else in the world.”
“We should never think that this is something that just happens in the ordinary course of events because it doesn’t happen with the same frequency in other countries,” Obama said.
— CBS News (@CBSNews) December 2, 2015
The Inland Regional Center has 670 staff members and provides services to more than 30,200 people with developmental disabilities and their families, according to its Facebook page. The center’s mission statement reads:
As an agency among agencies, Inland Regional Center coordinates with generic services to normalize the lives of people with developmental disabilities and their families by working to include them in the everyday routines and life rhythms of the community and by facilitating needed supports for them.
The day before the shooting, the Inland Center had celebrated a holiday party.
Wednesday’s incident comes less than a week after a gunman killed three people at a Planned Parenthood in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
There have been at least 351 mass shootings so far this year, according to the Washington Post.