U.S. News


Sheriff Admits Deputies Knew About Elliot Rodger's Videos

In a reversal of statements made soon after Elliot Rodger killed six people, the Santa Barbara Sheriff admits deputies knew of his disturbing videos.
Posted at 9:21 AM, May 30, 2014

Although police first said deputies "were unaware" of Elliot Rodger's disturbing videos posted before an even more disturbing rampage, it turns out that's not exactly true.

KTTV ANCHOR: "Law enforcement was aware of the threatening and disturbing videos, but never bothered looking at these. Four deputies and a police officer met with Rodger after being called by his mother and mental health therapist."

DIANA PEREZ, ABC ANCHOR: "The guns Rodger used in the killings last Friday were stashed inside that very same apartment at the time, but police never searched the residence or conducted a check to determine if he owned firearms because they didn't consider him a threat."

Police say Rodger stabbed three men to death inside his apartment last week before fatally shooting three other people. He also shot or tried to run over 13 more people with his car. (Via KABC)

On Thursday, the Santa Barbara Sheriff clarified deputies did know about disturbing videos before an April welfare check. They just didn't watch them.

In his self-pitying manifesto "My Twisted World" now posted to Scribd, Rodger wrote of the welfare check.

"I tactfully told them that it was all a misunderstanding, and they finally left. If they had demanded to search my room ... that would have ended everything. For a few horrible seconds I thought it was all over. When they left, the biggest wave of relief swept over me."

ELLIOT RODGER: "I don't know why you girls aren't attracted to me, but I will punish you all for it."

It should be noted the widely-cited YouTube video with Rodger describing what he called his retribution hadn't been posted at the time of the check.

While the sheriff says deputies followed policy during the welfare check on Rodger, mental health experts are questioning why they didn't check the videos when they were the reasons his mother and therapist contacted police in the first place.

The vice president of the LA chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness told the Los Angeles Times"If somebody was concerned about them enough to report them it would seem to me to be part of the checkup."

The Washington Post reports the sheriff's office didn't return its email seeking comment on the previous statements that said deputies were unaware of Rodger's videos.

A retired police captain who oversaw LAPD's mental health team told the Los Angeles Times watching the videos might not have changed the outcome of the killings, but it would have been part of a thorough investigation.