Shooter's Parents Sped to Try to Stop Him

All 6 of Elliot Rodger's victims now identified
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 26, 2014 4:44 AM CDT
Updated May 26, 2014 6:16 AM CDT
Shooter's Parents Sped to Try to Stop Him
People gather at a park in Isla Vista, California for a candlelight vigil to honor the victims of Friday night's mass shooting.   (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

When Elliot Rodger's parents realized just how dangerous their disturbed son was, they made a desperate attempt to try to stop him. They received a copy of his 141-page manifesto and saw a YouTube video outlining his plans for his "Day of Retribution" on Friday night and called 911 before rushing to Santa Barbara in separate cars, a family friend tells the New York Daily News. They heard about the shooting spree while they were on their way. "They were hoping against hope," the friend says. "They are in inconceivable pain." More:

  • His parents' desperate response was just one of many failed chances to stop Rodger, but he never crossed a threshold that would require a legal response, the Los Angeles Times finds. He had been in therapy since childhood, but turned his back on mental health care when he turned 18. He had no criminal history, never explicitly threatened others, and even when his worried parents requested police check on him, deputies found no reason to place him in an involuntary psychiatric hold.

  • A Santa Barbara county spokeswoman, however, says the visit by deputies last month is now being probed. "Obviously, looking back on this, it's a very tragic situation, and we certainly, you know, wish that we could turn the clock back and maybe change some things," says the county sheriff, whose deputies found Rodger to be calm and lucid.
  • Rodger complained of being rejected by the world—especially by attractive women—but a neighbor in his apartment building says the 22-year-old rebuffed attempts to get him to socialize with other residents. "He just sat and was nonresponsive," he tells the New York Times. "Any time anybody tried to get him involved, he just seemed like he didn’t want to be involved. He looked like he became gradually more frustrated or bored, and then eventually he would just get up and go inside."
  • All six victims Rodger killed before taking his own life have now been identified, the AP reports. The three people found stabbed to death inside his apartment have been identified as roommates Chen Yuang Hong, 20, and George Chen, 19. A third man, Weihan Wang, 20, may have been a visitor. Christopher Michaels-Martinez, 20—whose father slammed NRA and "craven politicians" after the killing—was shot dead inside a deli and Katie Cooper, 22, and Veronika Weiss, 19, were gunned down outside a sorority house. Weiss "was a kind-hearted person" who didn't look down on people, a friend tells People. "I'm just in shock. This was just a senseless tragedy by a horrible monster."
(More Elliot Rodger stories.)

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