1st Victim Identified in O.C. Shooting Rampage – Chris Burrous Reports
LADERA RANCH, Calif. (KTLA) There are new details in the violent Orange County shooting rampage that left four people dead, including the alleged gunman.
Police have identified the first victim of Tuesday morning’s murder spree as 20-year-old Courtney Aoki, of Buena Park.
Authorities have also released the frantic 911 call made by the parents of the suspect, 20-year-old Ali Syed.
“I think somebody’s shot … in my house,” Syed’s mother says. “Somebody’s shot. I think there’s somebody shot.”
Hysterical, the woman tries to answer the dispatcher’s questions. Her husband eventually takes over the phone.
“Can you please send somebody here?” he says. “Our son lives with us and I think they got into a fight or something and we heard a gunshot.”
The father also tells the dispatcher that their son has a rifle that he purchased legally.
The parents said they had not gone into their son’s room, but they thought he had left the home in their SUV. They said they did not see a victim.
After allegedly shooting and killing Aoki, police say Syed set off on his 75-minute-long shooting spree, killing two more people and injuring three others.
Syed ended up shooting himself to death as he was being pursued by authorities.
Investigators say they’re not sure what might have set Syed off. He has been described as a loner who spent a lot of time alone in his room playing video games.
At a news conference on Wednesday, Orange County Sheriff’s Department spokesman Jim Amormino said Syed left “no evidence, no note, nothing that would explain this very bizarre, violent behavior.”
He said that, after talking to witnesses and those who knew Syed, “nothing indicated… any violence in the past or anything of that nature.
Syed was unemployed and enrolled in one computer class at Saddleback Community College. He had no criminal record.
No drugs were found in Syed’s room, Amormino said, though toxicology results were still pending.
Meantime, KTLA has learned that the first victim, Courtney Aoki, was going to college and was paying for school by stripping.
KTLA spoke exclusively to a man who often drove Aoki and other girls, and provided security for them when they went to entertain clients. He did not want to be identified.
“I was one of her drivers. She was a stripper,” the man said. “She stripped so she can pay her way through college,” he added.
“What you do is drive her to the place of the person who wants her to strip,” the man explained. “And you drive her there, you stand there and wait for her to come out.”
“If there’s a big party, let’s say a bachelor party, and there are five or six people, you go in there with her and make sure no one touches her.”
He said that he wasn’t with Aoki on Tuesday morning, but he feels terrible about what happened.
“Very nice girl, very sweet girl,” he said, describing Aoki. “One of the sweetest girls I know. Very quiet, very respectful, very polite. She had her whole life ahead of her.”
Investigators have not confirmed any information about Aoki’s occupation. They say they are still trying to determine how she met Syed and why she was at his home.