Rancho Tehama Reserve, CA – In the early morning hours, a gunman in California has shot 4 people and injured 10 while aiming his attack on the local school, but was stopped by a lockdown procedure that saved the people inside. The man continued his rampage outside but was later killed by the cops.
No children were killed in the shooting spree shortly before 8 a.m. (Pacific Time).
This could’ve been worse had the staff at the school had not heard the gunshots that were echoing through the air about a mile away, Sheriff Phil Johnston said.
“The shooter literally took his vehicle and rammed their fence and gate, entered the grounds on foot with a semiautomatic rifle,” Johnston said at a Tuesday afternoon press conference about the shooter, who has now been identified as Kevin Neal (PICTURED ABOVE).
“It appears that because he couldn’t make access to any of the rooms — they were locked — that he gave it up and reentered the vehicle and then went on his killing spree and took it to the streets of Rancho Tehama,” Johnston said. “So I really want to say that the quick action of those school officials, there is no doubt in my mind based on the video that I saw, saved countless lives and children.”
One child was hit by a bullet Neal fired into his vehicle while traveling to school and another child was hit by a bullet at the school.
Coy Ferreira, a parent who was among those who took shelter in a room at the school after the gunfire began, and described holding the door shut and students taking cover underneath desks.
“I wasn’t sure if the door was locked or not, and during that time of me going ten steps to the door a couple bullets struck one of the students that was underneath a desk,” he told NBC News in an over the phone interview.
Neal not only shot at vehicles, he also shot at POLICE OFFICERS.
Now prior to this whole situation, we see that this man was also charged with assault with a deadly weapon against a woman, who was also killed in this shooting spree.
Neal wore with him a semi-automatic and a rifle to continue the assault.
Brian Flint, one of Neals neighbors told the Record Searchlight Newspaper that he only known Neal as Kevin and….
“The crazy thing is that the neighbor has been shooting a lot of bullets lately, hundreds of rounds, large magazines. We made it aware that this guy is crazy and he’s been threatening us.”
Kevin Neal’s mother who lives in Raliegh, North Carolina says that Neal had been saying strange things in his phone calls to her.
“Mom it’s all over now. I have done everything I could do and I am fighting against everyone who lives in this area.”
A motive in the shooting is unclear at the moment (WOW DOESN’T THAT SOUND FAMILIAR).
It “appears that he chose the school as a random target,” and investigators have not connected Neal with anyone at the school, Johnston said.
“This guy was on a killing rampage, he was driving up and down the street shooting at passersby and uninvolved residences,” Johnston said.
Neal’s mother says that in the last few weeks her son had seemed depressed and in despair because his situation with his neighbors who he said had a meth lab and was harboring fumes that were harming his dogs.
“All of a sudden, now I’m on a cliff and there’s nowhere to go,” she recalled her son telling her. “No matter where I go for help here I get nobody who will help me. All they are doing is trying to execute me here.”
Two people were found dead at the first shooting scene and another person was killed after Neal rammed his vehicle and fired at the occupants, Johnston said.
Tiffany Rodgers and her husband were setting up outside their coffee shop, Coffee Addiction which is a mile from the school, when they had first heard gunfire. “I heard the first 10 rounds. We heard about 20 more rounds,” Rodgers, 33, told NBC News in a phone interview from Corning, California.
California Gov. Jerry Brown said he and his wife, Anne, are saddened by the shooting that “shockingly involved schoolchildren.”
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I guess this is another “MENTAL HEALTH ISSUE” or “HARD TIMES IN HIS LIFE” story. It seems like these shooters can’t take life, they can’t ‘pull themselves up by the bootstraps’. SMH sad!