The California man who went on a shooting spree around his town Tuesday had first killed his wife at home before gunning down four other people and attacking a nearby elementary school, authorities said.
The body of gunman Kevin Janson Neal’s wife was found hidden under the floor inside the couple’s home, Tehama County Assistant Sheriff Phil Johnston said at a news conference Wednesday. Authorities believe she was the shooter’s first victim.
“We believe that’s probably what started this whole event,” Johnston said, according to KCRA 3.
Neal shot and killed five people in total and wounded 10 others before he was fatally shot by police. Two of the deceased victims were the shooter’s neighbors, and the others appeared to have been targeted at random, authorities said.
At one point during his shooting spree, Neal rammed through the locked gates at Rancho Tehama Elementary School, before classes began. He fired dozens of shots through windows and walls from the outside when he couldn’t get into the building, school officials said in a statement. No students were killed, but at least one student inside a classroom was wounded by gunfire, according to the Corning Elementary School District. The student is in stable condition.
“It was a bizarre and murderous rampage,” Johnston said.
Neal had previous domestic violence issues and problems with his neighbors, which authorities believe may have set him off, according to the Associated Press.