According to a VTA employee, the shooter “made certain.” Those that were targeted were shot and killed by him.


According to a VTA employee, the shooter “made certain.” Those that were targeted were shot and killed by him.

According to a witness, when Samuel James Cassidy opened fire at his Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) job on Wednesday morning, killing nine individuals including himself, his victims looked to be targeted.

Kirk Bertolet, a VTA employee who witnessed the shootings and witnessed coworkers draw their final breaths, claimed Cassidy “made sure” his targets were dead.

“He was enraged, and he exacted his wrath on a small group of people. He was a sniper. He allowed others to live,” he explained. “It was a deeply intimate experience. “Extremely precise.”

Sheriff Laurie Smith of Santa Clara County agreed that Cassidy’s victims appeared to be handpicked, and that the gunman had informed one or more persons that he wouldn’t shoot them. Despite having a friendly personal relationship with Cassidy, Bertolet described the 57-year-old as an outcast in the office who never spoke to his coworkers.

“I saw where he was pushed. Sam was usually on the periphery of things. He was never a member of the group. Bertolet told the Associated Press, “He was never accepted by anyone.” “You look back and you go, ‘yeah, it fits.’”

Cassidy’s ex-wife, Cecilia Nelms, told AP that he would often return home from work angry and had even spoken about killing fellow employees.

“I never believed him, and it never happened. Until now,” she said.

For more reporting from the Associated Press, see below.

Authorities have not speculated on a motive beyond characterizing Cassidy on Thursday as a “highly disgruntled VTA employee for many years, which may have contributed to why he targeted VTA employees.”

Glenn Hendricks, chair of the VTA’s Board of Directors, said Thursday that he had no information about any tensions between Cassidy and the co-workers he shot.

“VTA is a close family,” Hendricks said. “I would let the investigation work itself out.”

The investigation is complicated. It spans two crime scenes—Cassidy apparently had a device that would set his home on fire almost simultaneously to when he began shooting—and has 100 potential witnesses who were working at the railyard at the time.

Cassidy arrived at the rail yard around 6 a.m., carrying a duffel bag containing three semi-automatic handguns and 32 high-capacity magazines. It’s not clear exactly when the bloodshed began, but the first 911 call reporting an active shooter came at 6:34 a.m.

“We were sitting in. This is a brief summary.


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