Alex Horton General Mission Reporter Covering National News and Latest News – November 8 at 5:09 pm Shots were heard again at Borderline Bar & Grill when Sgt. Ron Helus has arrived. Emergency calls flooded 911 after an armed man entered the Thousand Oaks bar in California on Wednesday night, and he methodically killed people on a dance floor scuffed by boots. cowboy at the university party, said witnesses later. In a few minutes, Helus, a veteran sergeant at the Ventura County Sheriff's Office, answered calls with a traffic policeman. They were motivated by their training that changed after the Columbine High School massacre: do not wait. Face the shooter. "One subject said that she had not seen it coming out," Helus told a dispatcher, according to an audio recording obtained by The Mercury News. "We are making an entrance." A few seconds passed. "We have several people on the ground," said Helus. "We need a lot of ambulances." More time was flowing. Another officer radioed, "Be warned that several shots were fired, in the northwestern rear zone." Helus was shot several times. The policeman who accompanied him saved Helus "out of the fire," Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean told the press on Thursday morning, and helped secure the scene for the arrival. other officers. Dean announced the death of 11 people at the press conference. His voice broke. Helus, he said, was the 12th. He died in a hospital – a year before his retirement after 30 years of service. "He was totally committed, he gave everything and tonight, as I told his wife, he died as a hero," Dean said. "He came in to save lives – to save other people."
Sergeant Sheriff Ron Helus. (Department of the Sheriff County of Ventura via AP) At a second briefing, Dean said the community of Ventura County had "lost a hero. It's a great human being. Helus was on a phone call with his wife when he reacted to the incident and told him that he liked it, Dean said. President Trump praised "the great bravery of the police," adding in a tweet, "God bless all the victims and the families of the victims." Later, Trump ordered the flag to be flown mid-stick. Helus was living in the nearby neighborhood of Moorpark, leaving behind a woman and her son, Dean said. Helus was an outdoor enthusiast who crossed the serene waters of the San Joaquin River. On some backcountry trips, he would see more bald eagles and deer than people, he said on Facebook. "I've probably had 200 encounters with 3 mountain bears and 3 mountain lions," Helus told a friend of Facebook who jokingly asked him if he was partly an animal. His age was not immediately clear Thursday. Helus did what he was trained for, Dean said. The 1999 killings in Columbine have transformed the way in which law enforcement responds to active shooter incidents, he said. Before that, officers and first responders secured a perimeter and waited.
Geoff Dean, Sheriff of Ventura County. (Frederic J. Brown / AFP / Getty Images) Now, the training has focused on aggressively pursuing suspects before they kill more people or target those already injured. "When you get to a scene and you're two or even one and shooting is going on, you come in," said Dean. The sheriff briefly calmed the shooting, while people were hiding in the toilets and attics. The investigators were still working to determine the pattern and other details. "I saw three people being shot by him," said Teylor Whittler, 19, describing the shooter. She grew up in a military family and knows firearms, she told Fox News. "He had a perfect form," said Whittler. "It seemed like he knew what he was doing." The authorities identified the gunman as Ian David Long, 28 years old.[[[[A clean and raw room: Sutherland Springs still fighting the church massacre]In addition to the deaths, Dean estimated that there were more than 10 to 12 gunshot victims who were "rescued from the scene and taken to local hospitals." Other slightly injured victims fled the scene on their own, he added. Dean, whose retirement as sheriff is effective Friday, was upset when asked how the ministry would honor Helus. MPs, he said, will close the roads for a morning procession, where they will escort the Helus' body from a hospital to the County Medical Examiner's office. "It's so tragic to lose Ron," Dean said. "We go to the gym together, work together. Issac Stanley-Becker, Mark Berman, Lindsey Bever, Allyson Chiu, Antonia Noori Farzan, Meagan Flynn, Kyle Swenson, Fred Barbash, Amar Nadir and Matt Zapotosky contributed to the writing of this report. .