Local News

Motive Remains Unclear in SaMo Shooting Rampage

SANTA MONICA, Calif. (KTLA) — Investigators on Monday were still trying to piece together a motive in Friday’s deadly shooting rampage in Santa Monica.

SMsuspectJohn Zawahri, 23, allegedly shot and killed his father, brother and three other people before he was killed in a shootout with police.

There was a growing memorial outside the family’s home on Yorkshire Avenue for 55-year-old Samir Zawahri and 25-year-old Chris Zawahri.

Investigators were looking at family connections as a possible motive because the father and brother were the first victims.

They were shot before the house was set ablaze, police said.

The family reportedly moved into the house at least two decades ago, but then the mother and father divorced.

John Zawahri had lived with his father, and his brother went to live with their mother, investigators said.

Zawahri was extremely affected by the very bitter divorce, according to neighbors.

Santa Monica police had visited the home back in 2006. They would not give any additional details because Zawahri was a juvenile at the time.

Zawahri was “heavily armed and ready for battle,” when he headed to the campus of Santa Monica College, police said.

He was armed with a weapon similar to an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle, officials said.

He was wearing fatigues, knee pads and a utility vest, and was carrying a duffel bag with a .44-caliber handgun, a .233-caliber rifle and at least 20 loaded magazines.

Zawahri had the capability of firing 1,300 rounds of ammunition, according to authorities.

Some neighbors said that Zawahri had a fascination with weapons and suffered from mental problems. He may have been institutionalized briefly, though that was not confirmed.

He may have had ties to Santa Monica College around 2010, but school officials have not confirmed whether he was a student.

Zawahri was shot and killed by police at the library on campus. He died at the scene. Zawahri would have turned 24 on Saturday.

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