Festival gunman was apparently preparing for large-scale attack

Police say the 19-year-old gunman who opened fire at a California food festival on Sunday acted alone. Three people were killed in the attack at the Gilroy Garlic Festival and more than a dozen others were hurt. Investigators say the suspect was caught on surveillance video visiting several stores by himself ahead of the attack.

A newly released search warrant suggests Santino Legan was preparing for a large-scale attack. In searching the suspect’s Nevada home Monday, investigators say they found a bulletproof vest, gas mask, knife and gun pamphlets. The San Francisco Chronicle reports they also found reading materials on radical Islam and white supremacy and, according to one of his brothers, he was a “loner.”

According to police, a shotgun was recovered from the suspect’s car and that it and the assault rifle used in the shooting were purchased legally in Nevada. Police say they’ve already received numerous cellphone videos and photos of the shooting and are talking to victims to better understand how the shooter moved through the crowd.

Among those killed in Sunday’s attack were 6-year-old Stephen Romero and 13-year-old Keyla Salazar. Keyla’s relatives gathered to remember her Tuesday and one read a statement by her mother:  “We wanted to be here because we think it’s important that the community knows who Keyla is, and how important she is for us. She was our motivation, and we’re in pain that we lost her.”

The festival grounds in Gilroy are still considered a crime scene. Investigators say it could take up to five more days to finish processing evidence. Police say they are currently combing through the suspect’s phone and computer to better understand his mindset but at this point they don’t believe he was targeting people of color.

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