Violence in Southern California on Friday night left six people dead — three stabbed in suspect Elliot Rodger's home, and three killed in a shooting rampage shortly afterwards – in what Sheriff Bill Brown called “the work of a madman.” The sheriff has named the suspect as 22-year-old Rodger, later found dead in his car in an apparent suicide. Rodger had apparently posted a YouTube video titled “Elliot Rodger’s Retribution” the day before, launching into a seven-minute-long diatribe against women who had rejected him in the past, telling them: "I will punish you all for it."
"After I have annihilated every single girl in the sorority house, I will take to the streets of Isla Vista and slay every single person I see there," Rodger said in the YouTube video, according to USA Today. Sheriff Brown said that Rodger had killed three people at his home in Isla Vista before embarking on a drive-by shooting rampage near the University of California, Santa Barbara campus. Two female students were killed outside a sorority house.
Rodgers was a student at Santa Barbara City College. Said Sheriff Brown of the attack: "This was a premeditated mass murder," which was done by someone "severely mentally disturbed."
Rodgers was the son of The Hunger Games assistant director Peter Rodger. His stepmother, actress Soumaya Akaaboune, had starred in Green Zone. Rodger grew up in affluent neighborhood, and was photographed at the premiere of the Hunger Games back in 2012. "We are experiencing the most inconceivable pain and our hearts go out to everyone involved," family lawyer Alan Shifman told press outside the family home.
It's reported that the director and the rest of the suspect's family had approached police about Rodger's troubling behavior in the weeks leading up to the killings. Sheriff Brown confirmed that the police department had been in touch with the suspect three times, once when a family member asked them to check in on him.
The suspect still had hundreds of rounds of ammunition left when found in his car.
In a report from 2008, California was found to be the worst state in the U.S. for drive-by shootings, with 40 people dying and another 129 being injured from 148 instances of gunfire from a car over a period of six months that year. Texas came second, with 60 instances of drive-by shootings that left six dead and another 52 wounded. In total, 733 drive-by shooting incidents were reported across America over that six-month period, leaving 154 dead and another 631 wounded.