A father of six. A free spirit who befriended strangers in the grocery store checkout line. A mother of three who fled religious persecution in Iran. A woman who was 8 when she and her mother left Vietnam for a better life. The youngest was 26. The oldest was 60.
These are the names and stories of the 14 people killed in the San Bernardino shooting on Dec. 2, 2015. They lived across Southern California, from Los Angeles and Orange counties, in the Inland Empire and the San Bernardino Mountains that tower over the valley where the shooting occurred.
The list will be updated as more information becomes available. It also includes information about some of the 21 people wounded.
During a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing this morning, Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), asked how Malik could get a visa and pass a K-1 visa test “when she was communicating about jihad online?”
“How does it sometimes get missed?” Schumer asked FBI Director James Comey. “This is going to cause great consternation to the American people, where we have two people talking about jihad for a couple of years, and most Americans have the assumption we’re on top of things like this.”
Comey said that in general, FBI agents know only about private communication “if we have some reason to believe it’s going on.” (Officials previously have said neither of the shooters was known to law enforcement.)
Then, the FBI chief said, agents would seek court permission to listen in to the communications, at least or until they “went dark” and started using encrypted devices to get around U.S. federal agents.
[The attack was carried out] with a single, repugnant purpose: to harm, frighten and intimidate anyone who believes in open and tolerant societies; in free and democratic governments, and in the right of every human being to live in peace, security and freedom.
Atty. Gen. Loretta Lynch, speaking to the Royal Institute of International Affairs in London on Wednesday
Watch live: Officials testify on Islamic State strategy
FBI Director James Comey told the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday that Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik, his wife, began scheming to carry out a terror attack before they were engaged and before she moved to the United States on a fiancee visa last year.
Comey’s announcement about the couple’s past takes the investigation in a new direction, suggesting that Farook, a U.S. citizen, purposely traveled to Saudi Arabia and Pakistan to find a partner to help him carry out the attack.
Meanwhile, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) said Malik may have given false information on her visa application.
Matt Nicholson, a 23-year-old Redlands resident, said he had thought about buying a firearm in the past. But the attack that claimed 14 lives Wednesday at a San Bernardino social services center — five miles from Gun Boss Armory — made him decide to buy a gun.
"It was a little too close to home," he said.
Nicholson was one of a number of rattled customers streaming into gun stores this week in and around San Bernardino County, a relatively conservative region where gun culture has deeper roots than in California's coastal cities. As politicians and gun-control advocates seize on the San Bernardino shooting as a reason to restrict firearm access, many of those on the front lines of the massacre are seeking to arm themselves.
Could a terrorist organization have funneled money to the San Bernardino shooters through an online lending platform?
That question arose Tuesday after Bloomberg News and others reported that Syed Rizwan Farook received a $28,500 loan from San Francisco online lender Prosper Marketplace just weeks before he and his wife killed more than a dozen victims.
Prosper doesn’t make loans directly, but rather acts as a middleman, matching up borrowers with investors who want to lend. It’s part of a new and fast-growing corner of the online finance world that’s made billions of dollars in loans over the last few years.
For borrowers, who often use the loans for home improvements or to consolidate debt, these so-called peer-to-peer loans are usually faster, more generous and carry lower interest rates than credit cards.
But the firms’ practice of lining up borrowers with investors online has led to speculation that ISIS or another group might have been able to use the platform to finance Farook and Tashfeen Malik’s rampage.
Before anyone checked whether the shooters had left the scene of Wednesday’s massacre, a medic — carrying a rifle and embedded with a SWAT team — hurried into the building and began saving lives.
That man, Ryan Starling of the San Bernardino Fire Department, knew other medical personnel would be ordered to wait at a safe distance. A little while later, a handful of other rescuers saw him and entered too.
In much of the country, fire rescuers are held back in safe “cold” zones, waiting for law enforcement to clear “hot” areas where gunmen are active. Only an elite group of firefighters like Starling enter active scenes.
However, federal recommendations issued in 2013 call for changes so that all fire department medics, working with police, can enter “warm zones” — areas near active shooters where a threat might exist — before the attackers have been fully contained.
“It is almost unacceptable to stand back anymore,” said E. Reed Smith, medical director of the Arlington County Fire Department in Virginia and an advisor on the new guidelines. “The citizen expects us to go to work.”
Since 9/11, we’ve felt we need to come out of our cocoons. We’re as American as anyone else … but if society is not feeling it, it means I’m not doing enough.
Shaykh Mohammed Faqih of the Islamic Institute of Orange County
In just four days, the Muslims United for San Bernardino campaign has raised more than $100,000 from more than 1,000 donors across the country, including in Florida, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee. The money will be disbursed through San Bernardino County and the United Way to assist victims’ families with funeral expenses and other needs, according to Faisal Qazi, a Pomona-based neurologist who began the crowdfunding effort.
On Wednesday, as the water raining down from the overhead sprinklers pooled in rivers of blood and the smell of gunpowder hung in the air, Ryan Starling remembered his training. He got out his white tape.
More than two dozen victims lay on the floor at the Inland Regional Center, the 33-year-old medic recalled Tuesday.
Starling began moving from body to body to determine who might survive.
“In five seconds, you look at their skin color, their breathing and you feel their pulse,” he said. “By all those things, you are determining if they are critical or deceased.”
He marked the dead with white tape so he and other rescuers could focus their efforts on the living.
Just minutes earlier, Starling and his SWAT teammates had been training for just such a grim task — conducting active shooter drills less than 10 miles away. He said that when the first shooting reports arrived, his specialized team, already armed and dressed, switched out simulated ammunition for real rounds and headed to the scene.
A crowd of people gathered Tuesday at a memorial at the corner of Waterman Avenue and Orange Show Road near the Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino.
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(Video by Dominik Baumann / Blick)
We simply choose to push back on every vestige of bigotry that threatened the best of what it means to celebrate democracy. ... We should not tolerate racial antagonism, prejudice or bias in any shape, form or fashion in our own space.
L.A. County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, on the vote today by supervisors to welcome Syrian refugees
Police in Corona are investigating a domestic violence allegation against the brother of one of the San Bernardino shooters.
Officers were called to the home of Syed Raheel Farook -- the brother of Syed Rizwan Farook -- about 2:30 p.m. Saturday after the purported victim, an unidentified woman, reported a domestic disturbance at the residence, Corona Police Sgt. Paul Mercado said.
Detectives returned to the home Monday afternoon for follow-up interviews. On Tuesday, they forwarded the case to Riverside County prosecutors for a possible charge of misdemeanor domestic battery, Mercado said.
After the attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, many Muslims say they have felt pressure to publicly denounce terrorism. But underlying that pressure is an expectation that they say, “Sorry.”
People who expect Muslims in general to make such an apology are “not bigoted, they’re not racist,” said Hussam Ayloush, executive director of the Los Angeles chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. “They’re just misinformed. So we do make a point to tell people that this is not who we are. ... We feel that we owe that to others, as fellow Americans, who share the same country.”
Americans should condemn all acts of violence, he said, but no American should have to apologize for their faith.
Syed Rizwan Farook got a $28,500 cash loan through WebBank.com weeks before the attack, according to federal officials.
Here is the company's full statement:
"Our hearts and prayers go out to the victims and everyone else impacted by the tragedy in San Bernardino. WebBank evaluates all loan applications in accordance with legal requirements, including U.S. anti-terrorism and anti-money-laundering laws. In addition, the bank continually works with regulators to address their inquiries and concerns and will fully cooperate with law enforcement agencies investigating this matter. However, federal and state law prevents WebBank from publicly commenting on any specific loan borrowers or applicants. As such, the bank will have no further comment at this time."
Inland Regional Center won't reopen until next year
The San Bernardino social services center where Wednesday’s shooting occurred will not reopen until sometime next year, a spokeswoman for the agency said.
Leeza Hoyt said officials had hoped to reopen the Inland Regional Center this month, but authorities have not “given the site back” yet.
“The process to clean up the building to make sure it’s safe and secure is taking longer than anticipated,” Hoyt said. “And as a result, we will not be able to occupy the buildings until after the first of the year.”
The Inland Regional Center occupies two of the buildings on the larger campus. The third building, which includes the conference center where the shooting occurred, will be closed indefinitely, Hoyt said.