0

Employee, 48, shoots 4, self at LA-area office

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- A man who shot four people, killing two, at a utility office east of Los Angeles before turning the gun on himself was a 48-year-old company employee from Southern California, authorities said Saturday.

Investigators identified the shooter as Andre Turner of Norco in Riverside County and ruled that his death was a suicide, Los Angeles County coroner's Lt. Larry Dietz told The Associated Press.

The two other men killed were Henry Serrano, 56, of Walnut and Robert Lindsay, 53, of Chino, Dietz said.

Two other shooting victims, a man and a woman whose names were not released, were in critical condition at a hospital, the Sheriff's Department said in a statement.

All five people worked for Southern California Edison in the same area of the same building at an office park in Irwindale, a small industrial city east of Los Angeles, authorities said. Authorities have released no information on a possible motive.

A woman who picked up the phone at a number listed in Turner's name declined to give her name or offer comment.

Horrified employees barricaded themselves behind locked doors and hid under desks Friday afternoon as Turner walked through the office firing a semi-automatic handgun, authorities said.

Edison International Chairman and CEO Ted Craver said Friday was "one of the most horrible days in our company's history."

"Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of the employees." Craver said.

Four of the victims were Edison employees and one was a contract worker, authorities said.

Most in the building work in information technology and some in the utility's transmission and distribution units, Edison said.

Police could not confirm media reports that at least two of the targeted victims were believed to be company managers.

The office complex and nearby schools were locked down as the Los Angeles County Sheriff Department's SWAT team responded to several 911 calls.

Some workers trapped inside the facility thought while the rampage was going on that it had left more people wounded.

Ron Orona of El Monte said his daughter, a 23-year-old employee who works in one of the adjacent buildings, said Turner had been in her building and talked to her boss about five minutes before the gunfire broke out. She heard the shots, and reached for her phone in a panic.

"She called me and said dad, there's two gunmen and 12 people have been shot," Orona told the San Gabriel Valley Tribune. "She was a little shook up, as I was."

Turner and Lindsay were found dead at the scene, and Serrano died at a hospital, authorities said.

No gunfire was exchanged after officers arrived, and police believed Turner acted alone

In the hours after the shooting, police cars, ambulances and fire trucks surrounded the building, and dozens of workers emerged with their hands over their heads.

The complex is surrounded by a fence and patrolled by a security guard. Employees need a security card to get into the building, said Gil Alexander, a spokesman for Southern California Edison. About 230 employees work in the building where the shooting took place, and about 1,100 employees work in the complex.

Two nearby schools were locked for about two hours after the shooting and no one on the campuses was hurt.

Irwindale is a city of about 1,400 residents in the San Gabriel Valley, 22 miles east of downtown Los Angeles. It is home to the Irwindale Speedway auto racetrack and large rock and gravel quarries.

Southern California Edison, a huge utility that provides power for most of the region, is one of its largest companies, employing 2,100 people.


Associated Press writers Greg Risling in Irwindale and Denise Petski in Los Angeles contributed to this report.

AP

12/17/11 16:35