A popular college bar in Thousand Oaks, California was the scene of a mass shooting last night. The normally very safe town was changed forever when a man armed with a Glock-45 handgun walked up to the doorman of Borderline Bar and Grill and shot him. The gunman proceeded to kill the cashier near the door then entered the bar to continue his deadly shooting spree. He killed 13, not including the gunman. The gunman has been identified as a 29-year-old Ian Long, a former US Marine with a history of PTSD.
Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean spoke to reporters about the heartbreaking heroic actions of six off-duty police officers:
It’s just amazing, there were probably six off-duty police officers in there, from a couple different agencies– and I’ve already talked to a parent that came up and said: “They stood in front of my daughter”. So it was amazing. It was amazing.
Off-duty officers used themselves as human shields. More stories of heroism in the tragic Borderline Bar & Grill mass shooting. #BorderLineShooting #thousandoaks #thousandoaksstrong #borderlinebarandgril l #breakingnews Full story: https://t.co/IeGIKY8Jdb pic.twitter.com/hvzKZqx4Ad
— FOX 11 Los Angeles (@FOXLA) November 8, 2018
One heroic Sheriff, Ron Helus died, as he stood in front of college students to protect them from the bullets of a mentally ill individual.
Ventura Country sheriff’s sergeant Ron Helus, who confronted the California shooter was shot multiple times and died from his injuries. He died a hero. Remember his name.
This is Ron Helus, the Sheriff Sgt. who was shot multiple times and killed in the #Borderlineshooting The Ventura Co. Sheriff says he went in to try & save lives. Died as a hero. Leaves behind a wife and son. Had planned to retire next year after 29 years on the force. #7News pic.twitter.com/7O2emgZnjl
— Amaka Ubaka (@AmakaUbakaTV) November 8, 2018
USA Today– Sheriff Sgt. Ron Helus “died a hero” after being shot by a gunman who killed 11 others at Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks, California.
Helus was among the first to arrive on the scene, entering the bar with a California Highway Patrol officer. Helus exchanged gunfire with the suspect, identified by authorities as Ian David Long, before being shot multiple times. Helus died at the hospital Thursday morning.
Helus, a 29-year veteran of the department, was looking to retire “in the next year or so,” Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean said.
“Ron was a hardworking dedicated sheriff’s sergeant,” said Dean, trying to hold back tears. “He was totally committed. He gave his all. Tonight, as I told his wife, he died a hero because he went in to save lives, to save other people.” Helus, 54, was survived by his wife and son.
A note to Colin Kaepernick, and others who kneel for our national anthem, as a way to protest law enforcement— In addition to disrespecting our flag, THIS story of Sheriff Helus, who voluntarily gave up his life to save others, is why we despise your actions. Every day, law enforcement officials put their lives on the line to save the lives of perfect strangers. Disrespecting brave men and women, like Sheriff Helus, as a way to draw attention to a few bad cops is not only wrong, it is beyond the pale.
An emergency hotline number has been set up to help loved ones locate those who may have been victims of the shooting.
— ABC7 Eyewitness News (@ABC7) November 8, 2018
Here is a live video from Fox 11 Los Angeles showing updates to the story: