Dubai, United Arab Emirates (CNN) – At least seven people were killed and an eighth seriously injured in two separate shootings in a small coastal community in central California, the second mass shooting in the state in three days, US officials said.
The suspect, identified as 67-year-old Chunli Chao, was arrested more than two hours after the shooting in Half Moon Bay on Monday night, San Mateo County Sheriff Christina Corpus said.
Authorities believe Zhao acted alone. Corpus noted that the motive was unknown Monday, and confirmed that there was no threat to the community.
“This is a devastating tragedy for this community and the families affected by this unspeakable act of violence,” Corpus said during a news conference.
At 2:22 p.m. Monday, a sheriff’s deputy was alerted to a shooting in a San Mateo County area about 30 miles south of San Francisco, Corpus said, and said they found four dead and a fifth wounded when they arrived at the first location, and later. Soon after, they found three more dead people in a separate location.
San Mateo County Board of Supervisors chairman Dave Payne told CNN earlier that one of the shootings took place at a mushroom farm and another near a trucking facility, about 2 miles from the farm.--
The suspect was located in his car in the parking lot of a police substation in Half Moon Bay, and was taken into custody without incident. A semi-automatic handgun was found in his car at the time, Corops said.-
“This type of shooting is horrific,” Corpus said at the news conference. “It’s a tragedy we hear about a lot, but today it came to San Mateo County.”
The tragedy occurred just 3 days after another mass shooting in Southern California on Saturday night left 11 dead in Monterey Park, adding to a sense of safety in the Asian-majority city on Lunar New Year’s Eve.
Overall, the United States has seen at least 38 mass shootings this month.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom said he was in a hospital meeting with victims of the Monterey Park mass shooting when he “was briefed on another shooting, this time in Half Moon Bay.” It is “tragedy after tragedy,” he added.