Eight Killed In California Shooting

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A gunman has killed eight people at a commuter train yard in California on Wednesday, police say.

The shooting took place at the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) rail yard in San Jose.

Officials say the victims include transit employees and the suspect, also an employee, is also dead.

The shooting broke out at 06:45 local time (14:45GMT), transit officials say. Authorities say they are checking the scene for explosive devices.

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Across the US, there have been 230 mass shootings so far this year, according to the Gun Violence Archive. A mass shooting is defined by the group as a crime in which four or more people are fatally shot.

What do we know about the shooting?

Early on Wednesday, the gunman opened fire in the VTA light rail yard. According to a local CBS station, shots broke out during an employee meeting for rail workers.

Police officers arrived at the scene while the shooting was ongoing, officials said.

“Our teams showed exemplary behaviour – what they’re trained to do – as shots were still being fired,” said Santa Clara County Sheriff Laurie Smith at a press conference.

Nine people, including the suspect, are dead. US media report that the gunman died by suicide, but police have not confirmed.

Just before the shooting, a fire broke out at a home belonging to a Santa Clara VTA employee, CBS reports.

Authorities say they are looking into whether the suspect may have set his home on fire before embarking on the rampage, but they have not confirmed.

San Jose Fire spokeswoman Erica Ray said that officials are investigating “multiple” crime scenes related to the shooting.

Authorities said that a bomb squad is at the scene and searching for explosive devices but that there is no active threat to the public. They would not specify how many explosive devices may have been found.

The shooting shut down traffic on nearby streets during the morning commute. Trains halted service at noon local time.

San Jose Sherriff’s Deputy Russell Davis emphasised that the investigation was active and ongoing. Authorities will give another update at 13:30 local time (21:30GMT).

What is the VTA?

The Santa Clara VTA – Valley Transport Authority – operates three train lines, making up over 40 miles (65km) of rail. They also operate about 70 bus lines in the city.

Santa Clara is the largest county in California’s Bay Area and is home to Silicon Valley – a hub for tech start-ups. It encompasses several cities in Northern California including Cupertino, San Jose and Mountain View.

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Editorial Staff
Editorial Staff
Our Editorial Staff at St. Lucia Times is a team publishing news and other articles to over 200,000 regular monthly readers in Saint Lucia and in over 150 other countries worldwide.

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