Suspect Shot, Officer Injured in Gunbattle Following California Mass Shooting

December 2, 2015 Updated: December 2, 2015
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SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. — Police: Suspect shot, officer injured in gunbattle following California mass shooting.

Live video footage captured the incident.

 

As many as three gunmen believed to be wearing military-style gear opened fire Wednesday at a Southern California social services center, killing at least 14 people and wounding more than a dozen others, authorities said.

Hours later, police hunting for the attackers riddled a black SUV with gunfire several miles away, and one person lay motionless in the street with a gun nearby, and officers appeared to remove a second person from the vehicle.

It was not immediately unclear if the suspects were the gunmen, though police earlier said the attackers may have fled in a dark SUV.

It was the nation’s deadliest mass shooting since the Newton, Connecticut, attack in December 2012 that left 26 children and adults dead.

Police shed no light on a motive for Thursday’s massacre, which came just five days after a gunman opened fire at Planned Parenthood in Colorado, killing three.

“They came prepared to do what they did, as if they were on a mission,” San Bernardino Police Chief Jarrod Burguan said, noting the attackers carried long guns — which can mean rifles or shotguns.

Witnesses said several people locked themselves in their offices, desperately waiting to be rescued by police, after gunfire erupted at the Inland Regional Center, which serves people with developmental disabilities.

The attack took place in a conference area where the San Bernardino County Department of Public Health was renting space to hold a banquet, said Marybeth Feild, president and CEO of the center. She said the building houses at least 25 employees as well as a library and conference center.

FBI agents and other law enforcement authorities converged on the center and searched room to room for the attacker or attackers, but it was feared that they had escaped.

Ten of the wounded were hospitalized in critical condition, and three were in serious condition,San Bernardino Fire Chief Tom Hannemann said. Police cautioned that the numbers of dead and wounded were early estimates that could change.

Epoch Times editor Jack Phillips contributed and curated this AP report.