A gunman opened fire on a public transportation rail yard in San Jose, California on Wednesday morning, killing at least eight employees and injuring at least one other person, said Deputy Russell Davis of the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office.
The shooter, a Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) employee, is dead, Davis said. He has been identified as Sam Cassidy, a law enforcement agency with knowledge of the investigation confirmed to CNN.
Mayor Sam Liccardo told CNN’s Jake Tapper that the shooter was no stranger to the people he shot.
“It is clear that the victims and all colleagues knew the shooter well,” said Liccardo.
According to the medical examiner, the victims ranged in age from 29 to 63 years.
They were identified by the medical examiner as Paul Delacruz Megia, 42; Taptejdeep Singh, 36; Adrian Balleza, 29; Jose Dejesus Hernandez III, 35; Timothy Michael Romo, 49; Michael Joseph Rudometkin, 40; Abdolvahab Alaghmandan, 63; and Lars Kepler Lane, 63.
Santa Clara County Sheriff Laurie Smith said the victims worked together and were together in the morning.
Cassidy had spoken angrily about his colleagues in the past and hated his job, his ex-wife told a Northern California news outlet.
“He had two sides,” Cecilia Nelms told the Bay Area News Group, a CNN affiliate, outside her home on Wednesday. “When he was in a good mood, he was a great guy. When he was angry, he was angry too.”
Davis said law enforcement officials did not exchange gunfire with the shooter and investigators believe he took his own life.
“I’m sure when the suspect knew the police were there, he committed suicide, our deputies were there at the time,” the sheriff said. The deputies were quick because the sheriff’s office is next door, she added.
Smith said that San Jose deputies and police officers entered a building as the shooting continued “and I know it saved many lives.”
One injured person is in critical condition, Davis said.
Investigators are investigating the shooter’s motive, he said. Santa Clara County district attorney Jeff Rosen said he didn’t know if there were possible red flags about the shooter’s intentions.
The shooter had more than one gun, the prosecutor said
Police also received information about explosives in the transit building, which was investigated by the bomb threat, officials said.
In addition, a house set on fire in San Jose around the same time as the shooting is believed to be the shooter’s home, a source close to the investigation told CNN.
The shooting began just after 6:30 a.m.PT when several 911 calls reported shots near a VTA control center, a light rail interchange, and a maintenance yard, Davis said.
Multiple law enforcement agencies and firefighters responded to the incident using their “active shooter protocol,” Davis said.