At approximately 11:20 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 7, authorities received multiple calls regarding a shooting at the Borderline Bar & Grill in Thousand Oaks, where a college night dance was being held. In the aftermath: 13 confirmed dead, including the gunman, and Ventura County Sheriff’s Sgt. Ron Helus, who was the first to respond to the scene, plus 21 injured.
Sgt. Helus was a 29-year veteran with plans to retire soon, according to Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean. A procession from Thousand Oaks to Ventura saw thousands gathering along freeway bridges and the 101 Freeway as Helus was transported to the Ventura County Medical Examiner’s office early Thursday morning.
The names of the victims are as follows:
Sgt. Ron Helus, 54
Sean Adler, 48
Cody Coffman, 22
Justin Meek, 23
Alaina Housley, 18
Noel Sparks, 21
Blake Dingam, 21
Jake Dunham, 21
Telemachus Orfanos, 27
Mark Meza, 20
Daniel Manrique, 33
In the aftermath, more details have been released regarding the shooter.
Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean identified Ian David Long, 28, of Newbury Park as the suspected gunman. Long, a Marine Corps Veteran, allegedly entered Borderline in a dark hoodie and mask, armed with what Dean said was a Glock 21 .45-caliber handgun with an extended magazine that he had purchased legally. Long opened fire on the crowd of hundreds and shot Sgt. Helus before turning the gun on himself, according to authorities.
Long reportedly posted to social media shortly before the attack took place, writing that he “had no reason to do it” other than “life is boring.”
In April, police were called to Long’s home after neighbors reported loud arguing noises coming from the residence. Neighbors reported frequent loud arguments occurring between Long and his mother. Officials with the crisis intervention team, which includes mental health experts, determined that Long did not qualify for an involuntary psychiatric hold, also known as a 5150.
Dominique Colell, Newbury Park High School track coach where Long attended in 2008, told the Los Angeles Times that Long attacked and groped her over a personal cell phone. Colell said that due to pressure from school administrators that reporting Long’s attack could jeopardize his application to join the Marine Corps, she did not report the incident.
On Thursday, Nov. 8, both the Hill and Woolsey fires forced many families of the victims to evacuate their homes just as agents from the FBI and ATF arrived to assist with the investigation. Some of the victims, such as Telemachus Orfanos, survived the October 2017 Route 91 Harvest Festival shooting in Las Vegas.