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Authorities: Shooter at YouTube HQ kills herself, wounds 3

Officers respond to reports of an active shooter

Officers respond to reports of an active shooter at YouTube headquarters in San Bruno, Calif., on Tuesday. Credit: AP / Jeff Chiu

SAN BRUNO, Calif. — A shooting at YouTube headquarters Tuesday that wounded three people is being investigated as a domestic dispute, two law enforcement officials said.

The officials with knowledge of the investigation spoke to The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity.

The shooter killed herself after opening fire with a handgun in a courtyard, police said.

After receiving multiple 911 calls reporting gunfire, officers and federal agents swarmed the company’s suburban campus sandwiched between two interstates in the San Francisco Bay Area city of San Bruno, as terrified employees huddled inside.

Television news footage showed people leaving the building in a line, holding their arms in the air. Officers patted them down to make sure none had weapons.

Officers discovered one wounded victim when they arrived and then found the shooter with what appeared to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound several minutes later, San Bruno Police Chief Ed Barberini said.

He said two additional gunshot victims were found minutes later at an adjacent business. Barberini initially said there were four shooting victims but later clarified that a fourth person suffered an ankle injury.

A 36-year-old man was in critical condition, a 32-year-old woman was in serious condition and a 27-year-old woman was in fair condition, a spokesman for San Francisco General Hospital said.

Google, which owns the world’s biggest online video website, said the company’s security team worked with authorities to evacuate buildings and was doing whatever it could support the victims and their families. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives said it also responded.

President Donald Trump tweeted Tuesday that he was briefed on the shooting. He wrote, “Our thoughts and prayers are with everybody involved. Thank you to our phenomenal Law Enforcement Officers and First Responders that are currently on the scene.”

Google CEO Sundar Pichai called it “a horrific act of violence,” saying the company “will continue to provide support to help everyone in our Google family heal from this unimaginable tragedy.”

YouTube employee Dianna Arnspiger said she was on the building’s second floor when she heard gunshots, ran to a window and saw the shooter on a patio outside.

She said the woman wore glasses and a scarf and was using a “big huge pistol.”

“It was a woman and she was firing her gun. And I just said, ‘Shooter,’ and everybody started running,” Arnspiger said.

She and others hid in a conference room for an hour while another employee repeatedly called 911 for updates.

“It was terrifying,” she said.

The YouTube headquarters has more than a thousand engineers and other employees in several buildings. Originally built in the late 1990s for the clothing retailer Gap, the campus south of San Francisco is known for its sloped green roof of native grasses.

Inside, Google famously outfitted the office several years ago with a three-lane red slide for workers to zoom from one story to another.

Zach Vorhies, 37, a senior software engineer at YouTube, said he was at his desk working on the second floor of one of the buildings when the fire alarm went off. He got on his skateboard and approached a courtyard, where he saw the shooter, whom he said was yelling, “Come at me, or come get me.”

There was somebody lying nearby on his back with a red stain on his stomach that appeared to be from a bullet wound, Vorhies said.

He said he realized there was an active shooter when a police officer with an assault rifle came through a security door. He jumped on his skateboard and took off.

“Today it feels like the entire community of YouTube, all of the employees, were victims of this crime,” said Chris Dale, a YouTube spokesman. “Our hearts go out to all those who suffered.”

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