At Least 12 Killed In Mass Shooting At California Bar In Thousand Oaks

At least 12 people have been killed in a shooting at a dance bar in Thousand Oaks, California. A police officer has been confirmed among those that died in the attack.

Officials have said the suspect was found dead, but has not yet been identified. The motive for the attack is also not yet known.

Police say the incident began at around 11.20pm (7.30am GMT) on Wednesday, when around 200 people were reportedly inside the Borderline Bar and Grill, attending a college country music night.

Reports say that the suspect was wearing all black, and may have used smoke grenades and what witnesses have described as a semi-automatic handgun.

Ventura County Sherrif Geoff Dean described the scene from inside the bar as 'horrific', saying that there was 'blood everywhere'.

Still from aerial footage of the Mass shooting in Thousand Oaks, California. Credit: PA
Still from aerial footage of the Mass shooting in Thousand Oaks, California. Credit: PA

One injured man told local news outlet KTLA: "We just dropped to the ground, we heard a lot of screaming. My friend is the DJ so she cut off the music, we just heard a lot of mayhem."

Teylor Whittler, who was another witness from inside, also said: "I was on the dance floor and I heard the gunshots, so I looked back and then all of a sudden everyone screamed, 'Get down!'

"It was a huge panic, everyone got up, I was trampled, I was kind of left on the floor until some guy came behind me and grabbed me and dragged me out."

Nick Steinwender, who is the Student Union President at nearby California Lutheran University, told KABC he rushed to the scene after hearing about a shooting at a bar where he knew friends and peers were.

"It was chaos, people jumping out of windows, people hopping over gates to get out," he said.

Ventura Sheriff's Sergeant Ron Helus was among those killed in the incident, having died in hospital after trying to enter the scene with a local highway patrolman and being shot several times.

The father-of-one was due to retire next year, having worked as a policeman for 29 years.

"It saddens us all and tears at our emotions," Sheriff Dean said.

"He died a hero. He went in to save lives, to save other people."

Our thoughts go out to those killed, along with their families, friends and anyone else affected by the attack.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Jess Hardiman

Jess Hardiman is a journalist who graduated from Manchester University with a BA in Film Studies, English Language and Literature, and has previously worked for Time Out and The Skinny among others.

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