State Watch

San Jose gunman had semi-automatic handguns, 11 magazines: officials

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The man who shot and killed nine people Wednesday at a San Jose, Calif., rail yard had two semi-automatic weapons and 11 magazines, authorities said.

A Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office spokesman revealed the details on the weapons to CBS News, and Sheriff Laurie Smith later confirmed the report to CBS San Francisco and CNN, telling the local CBS affiliate that the weapons were pistols. 

“I don’t know if he re-loaded, I don’t know the number of rounds that he fired, but of the people who were injured, none survived,” Smith told CNN Thursday.

The sheriff noted, though, that the weapons were “handguns of the type that would be legal in California.”

The county’s medical examiner-coroner’s office initially released the names of eight victims who died in the shooting Wednesday night and later said a ninth victim had died after being taken to a hospital in critical condition. 

The alleged shooter, later identified by authorities as 57-year-old Sam Cassidy, was an employee at the Valley Transportation Authority (VTA), where the shooting took place. 

The gunman also died from what authorities believe to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Smith told CNN Thursday that while authorities were sweeping the scene, police dogs alerted authorities to he suspect’s locker, where they found “precursor things for explosives … ingredients for a device.” 

The sheriff added that a bomb squad that had been sent to what was believed to be the gunman’s home, which erupted in flames around the same time of the shooting, found “additional rounds of ammo.” 

Smith said she would not go into further detail on the precursor devices found, beyond that they included detonation pulls and “a lot more” found at the house. 

The Hill has reached out to the sheriff’s office for additional information. 

Officials have not yet determined a motive for the attack, though Kirk Bertolet, a worker at the rail yard facility, told CNN affiliate KGO Thursday that the shooter bypassed some workers while “targeting certain people.” 

“He let other people live as he gunned down other people,” he said. 

Cassidy’s ex-wife, Cecilia Nelms, told The Associated Press Wednesday that her former spouse had previously talked about killing people at work out of frustration. 

“He could dwell on things,” she said. “I never believed him, and it never happened. Until now.”

Tags California CBS News CNN magazines San Jose San Jose shooting Semi-automatic rifles semi-automatic weapons The Associated Press
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