On April 3, police were informed of shots being fired from the YouTube headquarters in San Bruno, California, according to CNN.
Employees were inside live tweeting about the incident, while some weren’t aware of what was happening until they saw others fleeing for their lives while fire alarms were also being pulled to warn the rest of the building. Vadim Lavrusik, a product manager at YouTube headquarters, tweeted he “heard shots and saw people running while at my desk.”
Lavrusik later tweeted he was barricaded with his co-workers until they were evemtually evacuated. Two minutes later, police arrived to start scoping out the area for employees and any active shooter(s) that could still be roaming the area. By 12:53 p.m., seven minutes after the initial calls to the authorities were made, police found the lone suspect in the building.
The shooter was 39 year old Nasim Aghdam, an activist against animal cruelty and YouTuber, according to authorities. Aghdamn had entered through a parking garage and opened fire on the employees there, leaving three victims injured with gunshot wounds before turning the gun on herself, marking herself as the only death from the incident.
Students at the Island University were upset to learn about this event, and just as they said about previous shootings, some believe society has grown numb to these shootings. One of these students was junior theater design and tech major Lee Alvarado.
‘There have been so many people dead because they care more about guns than human lives,” Alvarado said. “I think where we are as a society is that we have been completely unphased by it anymore.”
Junior media arts major Dulce Gomez analyzed the situation more on the business side with YouTube.
“As a business owner, I have every right to refuse business to anyone that violates my rules,” Gomez said. “YouTube does not have to support any media that violates their rules. This is America, we have the freedom to protect our businesses from disgruntle people by any means. Better mental health care should be a priority. Anyone that has the ability, and the mental stability to carry a gun, should be allowed to carry one.”
According to CNN, Ed Barberini, San Bruno Police Chief, made a statement to the press to provide more information about Aghdam.
“A Smith & Wesson 9mm au- tomatic handgun, registered to the suspect, was recovered on the scene,” Barberini said. “Investigators also learned that the suspect went to a local gun range yesterday (April 2), the morning of the shooting.”
It is believed Aghdam was upset with the recent changes to YouTube’s policies and practices, and believed it was purposely filtering her videos to the point where people weren’t watching them and because of this, Aghdam would not receive any kind of advertisement revenue.
Around 2 a.m., the morning of the shooting, police said theyfound Aghdam sleeping in her car in Mountain View,about 28 miles from San Bruno. When her family realized she was close to the headquarters, they immediately told police that they would keep their eyes on her since she wouldn’t normally drive up there.
Andre Campbell, a trauma surgeon at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center who helped operate on the victims, expressed his some frustrations over the recent shootings,
“To think that after we’ve seen Las Vegas, Parkland, the Pulse nightclub shooting, that we would see an end to this, but we have not,” Campbell told CNN. “Gun violence happens every day throughout the United States. It happens here in San Francisco. It happens in the Bay Area. It happens all over the country, but I don’t see you guys out here because I’d like to make sure that people know that we got a serious problem that we need to address.”
Senior communication major Shannon Lowenstein said she agreed with Campbell’s statement.
“It’s hard in these situations because people say the same thing, that she was calm and cooperative,” Lowenstein said. “But she was upset about something and went too far. YouTube is a difficult company because people get paid ridiculous amounts for not really making an impact just making silly videos. If this was her job and they were making it more difficult for her to make money from her channel, there are obviously other ways to handle it. YouTube is a company, they can handle complaints and maybe could’ve helped her.”