A gunman killed four people in Rancho Tehama, a remote Northern California community about 125 northwest of Sacramento, on Tuesday. The killer tried but was unable to break into an elementary school in the nearby.
The staff at tiny Rancho Tehama Elementary School west of Corning has locked doors and students dashed inside and hit the floors underneath desks and tables. Only an outside bathroom was open, but the gunman found no one there. The shooter rammed a stolen pickup through the school's locked gate, walked into the schoolyard and fired through windows and walls. After about six minutes, he left. A student was wounded before by gunfire and was in stable condition. Others were hurt by flying glass. The shooter was killed by police.
"This individual shooter was bent on engaging and killing people at random. I have to say this incident, as tragic and as bad as it is, could have been so much worse," Tehama County Assistant Sheriff Phil Johnston said. He also specified the gunman had "prior contacts with law enforcement," The gunman's precise motives were unclear. He had a dispute with a neighbor who was found dead Tuesday. There were seven others shooting scenes. The killer fired at most of his victims at random. He also fired at passing motorists. The attacker had a tactical vest with extra magazines for his guns.