Police officials, who visited Elliot Rodger’s apartment three weeks before he went on a rampage last Friday killing six people and injuring more than a dozen near the University of California, Santa Barbara, or UCSB, knew about the disturbing videos he posted online, but did not watch them.
The Santa Barbara County Sheriff's department reportedly said in a statement Thursday that officers spoke to Rodger after responding to a welfare check call by a county mental health worker on April 30. And when the police asked him about the videos during the encounter, Rodger replied that they were only a way of expressing himself as he was having some trouble adjusting socially. The disclosure corrected an earlier assertion that officials were unaware of any videos posted by Rodger when they visited his apartment days before the shootings.
"Sheriff’s deputies concluded that Rodger was not an immediate threat to himself or others, and that they did not have cause to place him on an involuntary mental health hold, or to enter or search his residence," the sheriff's office reportedly said in the statement. "Therefore, they did not view the videos or conduct a weapons check on Rodger."
According to reports, police officials found out about his final video, which detailed the “Day of Retribution,” the name he gave his planned killing spree, and his 140-page manifesto, about an hour after the shootings.
Rodger’s final video, which presented his plans and reasons for the killings, was posted on YouTube on the day of the shooting, just a minute before he emailed the manifesto to his parents and therapist, the sheriff’s department reportedly said while revealing a new timeline of the events from last Friday.
Rodger, the 22-year-old son of a Hollywood director who worked on the first installation of the “Hunger Games,” stabbed three people identified as his roommates in his apartment, before gunning down three more individuals Friday night near the UCSB campus in Isla Vista.
Authorities from the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s office reportedly said that Rodger also wounded 13 people, including eight he shot as he tried to flee in his black BMW while exchanging fire with police. He then shot himself.