Authorities on Sunday released the names of all six people killed in Friday’s violent attacks in Isla Vista, the student community near UC Santa Barbara. Three of the victims, apparently stabbed to death in the apartment where the alleged killer, 22-year-old Elliot Rodger, lived, were all from the Bay Area. They are: 20-year-old Chen Yuan Hong, 19-year-old George Chen, both of San Jose; and 20-year-old Weihan Wang, of Fremont. Thirteen others were injured in the attacks. Santa Barbara Sheriff Bill Brown said Rodger was found dead from an apparently self-inflicted gunshot wound.
News reports say Hong and Chen, along with Rodger, held the lease for the apartment. The three victims were UC Santa Barbara students; Rodger was a former student at Santa Barbara City College, authorities said.
From the San Jose Mercury News:
According to their Facebook pages, Hong was a 2012 graduate of Lynbrook High School and was studying computer engineering. Chen graduated the same year from Leland High and had been a camp counselor for the YMCA. Wang was briefly a student at American High School in Fremont before he transferred to a private school, according to James Morris, superintendent of the Fremont Unified School District…
The sheriff revealed during a news conference Saturday that in January, Rodger accused Hong of stealing $22 worth of candles from him. Rodger took the unusual step of making a citizen’s arrest for petty theft and contacted sheriff’s deputies, who arrested Hong. He was booked and released, but the two men evidently continued living together.
Details are also emerging about the other victims, who were shot to death. KPCC’s Sharon McNary spoke with families and friends of the slain students. She filed this report:
Nineteen-year-old Veronika Weiss was shot to death Friday night outside a UC Santa Barbara sorority house that the gunman was trying to enter. Bob Weiss recalled his daughter Veronika as strong and independent, a fierce player on her water polo team, who went up against the toughest opponents at her high school in Westlake Village, west of Los Angeles,
“In my heart, I believe she was doing one of two things when she was shot,” he said. “She was either trying to help (Rodger), who was obviously under distress pounding on that door, or help her friends.”
Weiss said his daughter was a generous friend who attracted smart but awkward boys to the house, often the “nerdy kid who felt a little out of place; Veronika welcomed them with open arms.”
She was a member of the Tri-Delta sorority. So was the other woman who was killed by gunfire, Katherine Breann Cooper, of Chino Hills, a city east of Los Angeles.
Cooper was 22, nearing graduation with a degree in art history at UCSB. A friend said she was a painter, and outgoing. The family said through a friend that they were not ready to speak publicly about her.
Twenty-year-old Christopher Michaels-Martinez of Los Osos was a second-year English major at UCSB who planned to study law. He was also shot to death. His father made an impassioned plea Saturday for more to be done to address mental health and reduce the availability of guns.
Bob Weiss echoed that. “It’s such a lethal combination and we have the technology, we can do something if we want to.”
A memorial for his daughter Veronika is set for Monday evening at Westlake High.
Michaels-Martinez’s fatherals also criticized the NRA. From CNN:
“Our family has a message for every parent out there: You don’t think it will happen to your child until it does,” the visibly emotional parent said, his voice rising to a shout in obvious agony.
“Why did Chris die? Chris died because of craven, irresponsible politicians and the (National Rifle Association). They talk about gun rights — what about Chris’ right to live?” he continued. “When will this insanity stop? When will enough people say stop this madness, we don’t have to live like this? Too many have died. We should say to ourselves — not one more.”
The San Jose Mercury News has posted a transcript of the last video that Elliot Rodger posted on YouTube, shortly before the rampage in Isla Vista. It’s a chilling, bitter denunciation of the women whom he perceived as rejecting him, and in which he announces his intention to murder in a “day of retribution.” (You can watch Rodger’s videos here.) Here’s an excerpt from the transcript:
You girls have never been attracted to me. I don’t know why you girls aren’t attracted to me, but I will punish you all for it. It’s an injustice, a crime, because … I don’t know what you don’t see in me. I’m the perfect guy and yet you throw yourselves at these obnoxious men instead of me, the supreme gentleman.
I will punish all of you for it. (laughs) On the day of retribution I’m going to enter the hottest sorority house of UCSB. And I will slaughter every spoiled, stuck-up, blond slut I see inside there. All those girls I’ve desired so much, they would have all rejected me and looked down upon me as an inferior man if I ever made a sexual advance towards them (scoffs) while they throw themselves at these obnoxious brutes. I’ll take great pleasure in slaughtering all of you.
You will finally see that I am in truth the superior one. The true alpha male. (laughs) Yes. After I’ve annihilated every single girl in the sorority house, I will take to the streets of Isla Vista and slay every single person I see there. All those popular kids who live such lives of hedonistic pleasures while I’ve had to rot in loneliness for all these years. They’ve all looked down upon me every time I tried to go out and join them, they’ve all treated me like a mouse.
Meanwhile the New York Times has posted the 137-page autobiographical document that Rodger wrote called “My Twisted World. The Story of Elliot Rodger.” Rodger describes his life in detail, and more of the deep antipathy he felt toward women.
UC Santa Barbara’s student-run newspaper, the Daily Nexus, has more coverage.