Media reports on the motivation of the California festival shooter that also describe the suspect as a white supremacist are being contradicted by others who viewed his social media posts. The 19-year-old suspect, Santino William Legan, described himself as “Iranian” and “Italian” with posts about leftist ideals. It has also been discovered his family has ties to the Shia Islamic religious sect.
Legan killed three people – including two children – and wounded at least 12 others.
Before the shooting, Legan is believed to have posted two photos on Instagram.
Legan also allegedly posted praise about the leftist extremist book “Might is Right” which discusses evolutionary theory of survival of the fittest and the secularist view of might over morals. The book is popular among leftist anarchists who oppose the Trump administration and government in general.
Gilroy Police Chief Scot Smithee said, “We don’t have a motive for the shooting as yet. We are investigating all leads and if there was a potential second suspect. It’s too early to determine if any of the victims were targeted, or if the shooter fired indiscriminately.”
Some media reports also attempted to paint the suspect as a white supremacist, but viewers are pointing out that his Instagram posts blasted ‘t*** whites’ and used a derogatory epithet for whites while also praising his grandfather who was a key Shia Islamic figure.
His Instagram account has since been taken down.
Meanwhile, Chief Smithee commended his officers for their swift actions, despite thousands of people caught near the cross fire.
“As soon as he saw the officers, he engaged the officers and fired at them with the rifle. Three officers engaged the suspect. Those three officers fatally wounded the suspect and the event ended very quickly,” he added.
Gilroy Mayor Roland Velasco is calling this a “senseless shooting,” and offered prayers to the families of those injured and killed.
“We stand with you and we will be providing any assistance that we can in the days and weeks ahead,” he said.
Among the victims killed was 6-year-old Stephen Romero, who was described as a kind, happy, and playful child.
Thirteen-year-old Keyla Salazar was also killed during the shooting. A GoFundMe was set up for Keyla’s family. So far, the effort has raised $41,200 of the $50,000 goal.
The oldest victim killed during the shooting was 27-year-old Trevor Irby. He had recently graduated from college in New York.
Several organizations are showing support to the victims’ families by offering assistance with medical bills and counseling.
Police continue combing through social media accounts, searching for clues leading up to this brutal crime while others believe the evidence already exists to declare it a terrorist act connected to religious extremism.
–Metro Voice, CBNews and wire services