‘Oh, my God! There’s a shooting!’ Life or death moment at Inland Regional Center


Before noon, an employee screamed when she saw a woman shot outside the Inland Regional Center.

“Oh, my God! There’s a shooting! There’s a lady who got shot!” the woman said, according to Melinda Rivas, 51, a social worker at the center.

Rivas works on the third floor in Building 2 at Inland Regional Center, and her co-worker saw a woman who had been shot on the sidewalk between Building 2 and Building 3.


Rivas and her co-workers rushed into a conference room away from exterior windows and barricaded the door with as much furniture as they could – desks, chairs, tables – and sat on the floor to stay low.

Witnesses told Rivas that the attackers wore all black and ski masks. Rivas said she later saw one survivor who had blood covering his dress shirt, and had to crawl on the floor during the shooting.

Later in the day, as she passed by the regional center, she saw shoes, sweaters, jackets, even purses left in the street where people had fled.

“I’m just glad I’m alive,” said Rivas, who has worked at the regional center for about a decade and works with teens and young adults with disabilities and their families.

She says she watches the news about shootings and says, “Oh my God! Those poor people.

“I never thought I was going to be a part of it,” she said. “Today, it was us.”

Police said 14 people were killed and more than two dozen wounded in the attack.

Twitter: @AlanZarembo


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