California bar shooting: Witnesses describe escaping as gunman reloaded

A police officer was among the slain

Ian David Long, 28, wrote around the time of Wednesday's attack, law enforcement officials told CNN.

Authorities haven't determined a motive.

But neighbors reported hearing frequent loud fights between Ian David Long and his mother, one of them so extreme they called police in April, and authorities at the time anxious that the 28-year-old Afghanistan war veteran might have post-traumatic stress disorder.

Gunman Long (left and right) was a machine gunner in the Marines Corps and served until 2013 when he was given honorable discharge.

According to survivors, Long was dressed in all-black, wearing a baseball cap, sunglasses and a mask covering the bottom part of his face. Investigators have not commented on whether mental illness played a role in the rampage. His father, Jason Coffman said, "There are so many people that he touched and now they are going to be just as heartbroken as I am".

The dead included sheriff's Sgt. Ron Helus, a 29-year veteran nearing retirement who responded to reports of shots fired and was gunned down as he entered the bar.

Anderson said numerous Borderline regulars were also at Route 91 and would wear their "Vegas Strong" shirts to the bar.

Tel Orfanos lived through the deadliest mass shooting in modern US history only to lose his life in another one less than 10 minutes from his home barely a year later, a tragic coincidence that has devastated his friends and family.

Coffman then thanked reporters for their work on covering the massacre, describing this as "an absolute heart wrenching time for me and my family" and sending prayers to others affected.

Orfanos' mother, Susan Schmidt-Orfanos, was shaking with rage and grief when she spoke about how her son was unable to survive two mass killings.

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She said she wanted Congress "to pass gun control so no one else has a child that doesn't come home". She was appalled that such bloodshed had come to her community.

A statement from the sheriff's office said there would be a procession in honour of Helus, who leaves behind a wife and son.

Trump touted his efforts to fund PTSD among veterans but he declined to engage on questions on whether the nation needed stricter gun control laws.

Dean said Long was "somewhat irate", and acting "irrationally". But 13 months later, another mass shooter killed him.

"I'm super upset that it happened in our home, and I feel very bad for the families that have to go through this", said Merrill, the exhaustion evident in her eyes. Police said Long used a.45-caliber Glock handgun with an illegal, extra-capacity magazine, first shooting a security guard outside the bar.

"But I knew it was real so I just pulled him down". "He took decisive action, and it's just a tragic loss for us", he said.

Thousand Oaks, located 40 miles northwest of Los Angeles, is frequently named one of the safest cities in the country.

On Thursday, in the wake of the Thousand Oaks shooting, most country singers offered their sympathies and prayers without mentioning anything political - except for a few who have already been outspoken.

"Tonight Thousand Oaks takes its place with those cities, who in order to move forward will rely on hope. we are Thousand Oaks strong". Associated Press writers Rebecca Boone in Boise, Idaho, and Christopher Weber in Thousand Oaks, contributed.

The massacre was the deadliest mass shooting in the United States since 17 classmates and teachers were gunned down at a Parkland, Florida school nine months ago.

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