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Isla Vista shooting: Police may have missed a chance to stop Elliot Rodger before shooting spree

By Daniel S Levine,

Two days after the shooting rampage near the UC Santa Barbara campus in Isla Vista, California and there are still questions about what lead up to the killing of six people by Elliot Rodger, who then killed himself. It is now known that his parents did contact police after discovering his social media activity weeks before Saturday’s tragedy.

Police met Rodger, 22, on April 30 when another family member had seen his YouTube videos. According to ABC News, his parents and a social worker also expressed concern, but police didn’t take any action as he had removed the posts that raised the red flags among his family.

“They determined that he did not meet the criteria for an involuntary mental health hold,” Deputy Sheriff Bill Brown told the media.

However, as CNN notes, Rodger wrote in a 137-page manifesto that he feared a police visit would disrupt his plans.

“I had the striking and devastating fear that someone had somehow discovered what I was planning to do, and reported me for it,” Rodger wrote. “If that was the case, the police would have searched my room, found all of my guns and weapons, along with my writings about what I plan to do with them.”

He later continued, “I would have been thrown in jail, denied of the chance to exact revenge on my enemies. I can't imagine a hell darker than that.”

Rodger called his manifesto My Twisted World. It was first obtained by KEYT.

Police were not able to do much before the shooting. While now it is clear that Rodger was “very mentally disturbed,” as Brown described him, it was not clear when police met with him before. “He was articulate. He was polite. He was timid,” Brown told CNN.

Rodger began his rampage Friday night at his apartment, stabbing all three of his roommates to death, notes KEYT. His roommates were Cheng Yuan Hong, 20; George Chen, 19; and Weihan Wang, 20. Rodger also shot and killed Veronika Weiss, 19, and Katherine Cooper, 22, outside a sorority house and then Christopher Michael-Martinez, 20, inside a deli.

 
 

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