Biden Democrat Killer of 9 in California rail yard where he worked appears to have targeted victims, sheriff says

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May 28, 2021, 9:15:02 AM5/28/21
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SAN JOSE, Calif. — A gunman who killed nine people at a
California rail yard appeared to target some of the victims as
he fired 39 shots, a sheriff told The Associated Press on
Thursday, a day after his ex-wife said he would stew about
perceived slights at work and threatened to kill co-workers a
decade ago.

The shooter arrived at the light rail facility for the Valley
Transportation Authority in San Jose around 6 a.m. Wednesday
with a duffel bag filled with semi-automatic handguns and high-
capacity magazines, Santa Clara County Sheriff Laurie Smith said
in an interview.

“It appears to us at this point that he said to one of the
people there: ‘I’m not going to shoot you,’” Smith said. “And
then he shot other people. So I imagine there was some kind of
thought on who he wanted to shoot.”

While there are no cameras inside the rail yard’s two buildings,
Smith said footage captured him moving from one location to the
next. It took deputies six minutes from the first 911 calls to
find the gunman on the third floor of one of the buildings,
Smith said.

He killed himself as deputies closed in on the facility serving
the county of more than 1 million people in the heart of Silicon
Valley. More than 100 people were there at the time, and
authorities found five victims in one building and two in
another, Smith said.

Authorities do not yet know whether the gunman had worked
regularly with any of the victims. Investigators were serving
search warrants for his home and cellphone, seeking to determine
what prompted the bloodshed, the sheriff said.

“I’m not sure we’ll ever actually find the real motive, but
we’ll piece it together as much as we can from witnesses,” she
said.

The attacker was identified as 57-year-old Samuel Cassidy,
according to two law enforcement officials who were not
authorized to discuss the investigation publicly and spoke to
the AP on condition of anonymity.

The three handguns he had appear to be legal, sheriff’s
officials said. Authorities do not yet know how he obtained them.

He also had 11 high-capacity magazines, each with 12 rounds. In
California, it is illegal to buy magazines that hold more than
10 rounds. However, if Cassidy had obtained them before Jan. 1,
2000, he would be allowed to have them unless he was otherwise
prohibited from possessing firearms.

The sheriff said authorities found explosives at the gunman’s
home, where investigators believe he had set a timer or slow-
burn device so that a fire would occur at the same time as the
shooting. Flames were reported minutes after the first 911 calls
came in from the rail facility.

Cassidy’s ex-wife said he had talked about killing people at
work more than a decade ago.

“I never believed him, and it never happened. Until now,” a
tearful Cecilia Nelms told the AP on Wednesday.

She said he used to come home from work resentful and angry over
what he perceived as unfair assignments.

“He could dwell on things,” she said. The two were married for
about 10 years until a 2005 divorce filing, and she had not been
in touch with Cassidy for about 13 years, Nelms said.

The attack was the 15th mass killing in the U.S. this year, all
shootings that claimed at least four lives each for a total of
87 deaths, according to a database compiled by The Associated
Press, USA Today and Northeastern University.

President Joe Biden urged Congress to act on legislation to curb
gun violence, saying, “Every life that is taken by a bullet
pierces the soul of our nation. We can, and we must, do more.”

The shooting killed employees who had been bus and light rail
operators, mechanics, linemen and an assistant superintendent
over the course of their careers.

They were Alex Ward Fritch, 49; Paul Delacruz Megia, 42;
Taptejdeep Singh, 36; Adrian Balleza, 29; Jose Dejesus
Hernandez, 35; Timothy Michael Romo, 49; Michael Joseph
Rudometkin, 40; Abdolvahab Alaghmandan, 63, and Lars Kepler
Lane, 63.

Family and friends remembered Singh as a hero. He called another
transit employee to warn him about Cassidy, saying he needed to
get out or hide.

“He told me he was with Paul, another victim, at the time,” co-
worker Sukhvir Singh, who is not related to Taptejdeep Singh,
said in a statement. “From what I’ve heard, he spent the last
moments of his life making sure that others — in the building
and elsewhere — would be able to stay safe.”

Singh had worked as a light rail train driver for eight or nine
years and had a wife and two small children, said his cousin,
Bagga Singh.

“We heard that he chose the people to shoot, but I don’t know
why they chose him because he has nothing to do with him,” Bagga
Singh said.

A solemn and tearful moment of silence was held Thursday by
transit authority officials, who read the names of the nine
victims aloud and stood beside a giant poster board with their
photos.

The reality of the loss was hard to accept, said Raul Peralez, a
San Jose councilman and transit authority board member who was a
lifelong friend of Rudometkin, one of the victims.

“I, unfortunately, get to know personally how these nine
families have felt this past night, this morning with just a
sense of disbelief, with a hope that your loved one is still
going to come home and knowing that that’s just never going to
happen again,” he said.

A vigil for the victims was planned Thursday evening in San Jose.

Meanwhile, there was nothing in public records to indicate
Cassidy ever got in trouble with the law. He received a traffic
ticket in 2019, and sheriff’s officials said they were still
investigating his background.

But in court documents filed in 2009, an ex-girlfriend described
him as volatile and violent, with major mood swings because of
bipolar disorder that became worse when he drank heavily.

Several times while he was drunk, Cassidy forced himself on her
sexually despite her refusals, pinning her arms with his body
weight, the woman said in a sworn statement filed after Cassidy
sought a restraining order against her. The documents were
obtained by the San Francisco Chronicle.

The AP generally does not name people who say they have been
sexually assaulted.

Cassidy had worked for Valley Transportation Authority since at
least 2012, according to the public payroll and pension database
Transparent California, first as a mechanic from 2012 to 2014,
then maintaining substations.

Doug Suh, who lives across the street from Cassidy, told The
Mercury News in San Jose that Cassidy seemed “strange” and that
he never saw anyone visit.

“I’d say hello, and he’d just look at me without saying
anything,” Suh said. Once, Cassidy yelled at him to stay away as
he was backing up his car. “After that, I never talked to him
again.”

Wednesday’s attack was the deadliest shooting in the San
Francisco Bay Area since 1993, when a gunman attacked law
offices in San Francisco’s Financial District, killing eight
people before taking his own life.

https://www.adn.com/nation-world/2021/05/27/killer-of-9-in-
california-had-talked-of-workplace-attacks-ex-wife-says/

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