Morning Security Brief: Details Emerge About California Shooter, Mudslide in Colorado, and Violence in Ukraine

By Holly Gilbert Stowell

► Six people were killed on Friday night in Santa Barbara, California in a shooting and stabbing rampage that also left 13 people injured. Police say the gunman, 22 year-old Elliot Rodgers, stabbed three victims at his apartment, then shot three from his car at a popular night spot on the University of California-Santa Barbara campus before dying of a gunshot wound. Santa Barbara County law enforcement officials could not immediately determine whether the gunshot wound was from police responding to the incident or was self-inflicted. An emerging portrait of the young killer online reveals a Facebook page and YouTube videos where he constantly complained of loneliness and feelings of rejection. In a YouTube video titled, Elliot Rodger’s Retribution, the gunman describes years of rejection by women and says, “I don’t know why you girls have never been attracted to me, but I will punish you all for it.” According to Forbes, his parents reported him to police when they discovered the disturbing videos. Santa Barbara Sheriff Bill Brown says the department had three separate encounters with Rodgers, the most recent on April 30 when his family called for help. The sheriff said that Rodgers did not appear to pose a serious enough threat for law enforcement to take further action.

► Three men are missing after a massive mudslide in western Colorado on Saturday, and search efforts are still underway for any survivors. Mesa County officials say that it's difficult to appreciate the scope of the massive mudslide, which measures two miles wide and four miles long. Rescue workers have been thwarted by the danger still posed by the mudslide, with only the lower third being stable. USA Today reports that heavy rainfall the week prior to the slide likely contributed to the disaster. Family members of the missing men expressed hope that their loved ones would be found safe. Two are volunteer firefigthers and another works for the county road department. They were sent to investigate a disrupted irrigation pipe when the mudslide occurred.

► CNN reports that a deadly outbreak of violence in eastern Ukraine has left 40 dead and at least 31 people injured. Pro-Russian separatists, calling themselves Donetsk People’s Republic, attempted to take over the Donetsk airport on Monday when they clashed with Ukranian military forces. The violence marks the deadliest day since the crisis in Ukraine began. According to the BBC, Ukrainian Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said the military now has full control of the airport. "The enemy suffered heavy losses. We have none,” he said in a statement. A spokesperson for the separatist group confirmed that at least 30 of the deaths were from their group. 


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