“A U.S. Marine Corps veteran opened fire on a crowd of mostly college students and young adults dancing at a crowded country and western bar in a suburb of Los Angeles late on Wednesday, killing 12 people including a sheriff’s deputy,” Alex Dobuzinskis reports for Reuters. “Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean named the suspect, who was also killed, as Ian Long, aged 28. Dean told a news conference Long had likely shot himself.”

“He said he appeared to have shot at random, using only a Glock .45-caliber handgun. There was no known motive,” Dobuzinskis reports. “An unknown number of people were wounded in the shooting at the Borderline Bar and Grill, a popular venue with college students and young adults in the suburb of Thousand Oaks. Wednesday was dubbed ‘College Country Night.'”

“Dean said there were six off-duty law enforcement officers from various agencies in the bar when the shootings occurred, and some survivors said the law enforcement officers stood in front of them to protect them,” Dobuzinskis reports. “The dead officer was identified as Sergeant Ron Helus, a 29-year veteran of the department, Dean told reporters. Helus and a California Highway Patrol officer were the first to arrive at the bar and went inside just before 11:30 p.m. PST (0730 GMT). In a statement the sheriff’s office said there would be a procession in honor of Helus, who leaves behind a wife and son, on Thursday at 10 a.m. ‘Ron’s selfless, heroic actions will never be forgotten,’ the statement read.”

Apple CEO Tim Cook offered condolences via Twitter:

We are devastated by the senseless violence overnight in Thousand Oaks. Our hearts are with the victims and their loved ones — too many lives cut short and so many more forever changed. — Apple CEO Tim Cook

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Sergeant Ron Helus was a true, selfless American hero.

Our condolences and prayers to the family and friends of the victims. Having lived for a time in Camarillo, California, less than 15 miles from the scene, this one hits close to home.

Along with praying for the victims, families, and friends, we most fervently pray that a system will be devised wherein the severely mentally ill will be identified early and helped before they degenerate to the point where such calamitous tragedies befall innocents.MacDailyNews, February 15, 2018