Dozen killed in California shooting incident

At least 12 people killed in attack at California social service centre with officials saying situation is “active”.

Footage from the scene showed a number of people being treated on stretchers by paramedics [Reuters]
Footage from the scene showed a number of people being treated on stretchers by paramedics [Reuters]

At least 12 people have been reported killed and several injured following a shooting incident in the US state of California, with at least one “active” shooter still at large, local authorities say.

The San Bernardino Sheriff’s Department told Al Jazeera that the incident took place at the Inland Regional Centre, a local service centre in the city – located about 100km east of Los Angeles.

Police also confirmed to Al Jazeera that there were 12 fatalities.

In a statement following the shooting, US President Barack Obama told US broadcaster CBS that there’s a pattern of mass shootings across the country “that has no parallel anywhere else in the world”.

“There are steps we can take to make Americans safer, and we should do so in a bipartisan manner,” he said.  

For those concerned with terrorism, Obama said that there’s a no-fly list barring people getting on planes, but those same people are allowed to buy guns.   

The fire department said in a tweet that it was responding to reports of a “20 victim shooting incident”, which took place at about 11am local time [19:00 GMT].

Information was scarce immediately after the incident, with officials saying there were between one and three suspects.

Footage from the scene showed a number of people covered in blood being treated on stretchers by paramedics.

Aerial footage footage showed teams of tactical police searching a neighbourhood for a shooter, while large numbers of people were evacuated from the centre, which provides social and medical services.

The social services agency is among regional centers throughout California that administer, authorise and pay for assistance to people with disabilities such as autism and mental retardation.

Local police are taking the initial lead in the investigation, the FBI said [Reuters]

No arrests have been made yet. A number of law enforcement agencies were at the scene, including the local police department and the sheriff’s department.

The FBI confirmed in a statement that it was responding to the incident, but that local police were taking the lead in the investigation.

The White House said that President Barack Obama has been briefed on the incident and that he has asked to be kept updated.

The shooting comes just days after a mass shooting at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado, which killed three people.

In October, a gunman killed nine people at a college in Oregon and in June a white gunman killed nine black churchgoers in South Carolina.   

More soon …

Emergency crews respond to reports that up to 20 people have been wounded in a shooting in San Bernardino, California [Reuters]
Source : Al Jazeera, News Agencies


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