In one of the deadliest US school shooting in recent time, a crazed gunman sprayed bullets at a private Christian college in California on Monday.
At least seven people were killed and another three wounded when a former student opened fire inside Oakland's Oikos University which has links to the Korean-American Christian community.
Police Chief Howard Jordan said One L. Goh a 43-year-old Asian, surrendered at a Safeway grocery store, a few miles away from the massacre scene.
Investigators are trying to piece together the motive behind gory crime. According to them, Goh, a Korean-American has no criminal record and is believed to have acted alone.
Victims in the shootout
As per reports, around 35 people were present in or near the building when the tragedy occurred.
Using a .45-caliber handgun, Goh shot one of his victims at the reception desk before going on a shooting spree inside classrooms and firing additional shots as he ran out.
Armed police and rescue personnel swarmed the area. Specialized SWAT teams smashed windows with sledgehammers to rescue the petrified survivors hiding inside the building behind desks and locked doors.
Unharmed people were taken to safety. Those with minor wounds were given first aid at the campus while others with serious injuries were rushed to Highland Hospital.
Five died at the scene while another two succumbed on the way to the hospital. The injured are stated to be stable and at least one person has been discharged from the hospital.
California Governor Jerry Brown said in a statement, "The tragic loss of life at Oikos University today is shocking and sad.
"Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims, their families and friends and the entire community affected by this senseless act of violence."
Accounts of witnesses
According to reports, the middle-aged gunman was heavily built and dressed in tan or khaki clothes.
A teacher Lucas Garcia, 33, was in the midst of conducting an English class with 20 students when he heard shots ring out from the other side of building.
“I looked outside the door and someone said, `Somebody has a gun,”' Garcia said. “So I evacuated the classroom.”
Deborah Lee, a student said she heard the gunshots and fled. She stated, “The first time when I heard it, I thought it was fireworks or just joking, but right after that one woman screamed a lot, shouting, and then my teacher went outside to check and then he said one woman told them, that somebody has a gun, run, and then we all of us in class just ran away.”
Tashi Wangchuk’s wife, 28-year-old Dechen Yangzom, was in the second classroom when gunfire erupted.
"Out of instinct, she locked the door and turned off the lights then the guy came and banged on the door and shot several rounds at the door and then he left," Wangchuk said. "The police said what she did was heroic."