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Answers sought in CA shootings

FBI says it is now investigating incident "as an act of terrorism"

December 3, 2015

A violent attack on a holiday party in San Bernardino, CA, Wednesday killed 14 and injured 21 others. It was the deadliest incident of mass violence in the U.S. since the Sandy Hook School shooting three years ago.

The party for health care workers was well underway Wednesday morning, when two people with masks and dressed in black, entered the building and began shooting assault rifles and semi-automatic handguns. As chaos erupted, the two left the building. Wednesday afternoon police spotted the suspects' car and both were killed in an gun battle with police.

The suspects have been identified as Syed Rizwan Farook, 28, and his wife, Tashfeen Malik, 27. Farook reportedly had been employed as a health inspector for the County of San Bernardino for the past five years. Farook reportedly started the morning at the party but reportedly angrily stormed out of the party after some sort of disagreement.

The suspects were reported to have a six-month old child who had been left with relatives Wednesday morning. The two met online. Malik was a resident of Pakistan who was granted a spousal visa upon their marriage about a year ago. Family members said they were stunned and had not seen any signs of trouble. The FBI and local law enforcement officials said the couple were not previously known to be a threat.

Farook was born and raised in the United States but according to the Los Angeles Times, had witnessed a number of incidents of domestic violence while he was growing up in Riverside and Irvine, CA.

While police and the FBI tried to piece together if the incident stemmed from workplace grievances or a previously planned terrorism strike or a combination of the two, according to the city's police chief, Jarrod Burguan, thousands of rounds of ammunition, a dozen pipe bombs and other bomb making materials were found in the couple's home.

The police chief said the shooters "came prepared to do what they did as if they were on a mission."

Wednesday's incident in California comes less than a week after a public violence incident in Colorado Springs where a gunman killed three people and injured a number of others.

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