GILROY (KPIX 5) — Investigators from multiple agencies have been working around the clock to piece together what drove a gunman to open fire at the Gilroy Garlic Festival on Sunday, killing three and wounding at least 12 others.
“I think everybody wants to know why,” said Gilroy Police Chief Scot Smithee.
On Sunday, during the last hours of the festival, Santino William Legan, 19, parked his car in a neighborhood near the festival, walked along a trail for a little more than a half mile and then cut a hole through a fence to gain entry into the event.
He then began to shoot into the crowd, killing 6-year-old Stephen Romero, 13-year-old Keyla Salazar and 25-year-old Trevor Irby.
During a news conference Monday afternoon, investigators said Legan than began to shoot at officers who responded to the gunfire. However, the three officers shot and killed Legan less than a minute after he pulled the trigger.
“This event was completely fenced in, police officers, as well as FBI agents were on scene when the shooting occurred,” said Federal Bureau of Investigation Deputy Special Agent Craig Fair.
Investigators said they’re trying to figure out if Legan randomly shot at his victims or targeted them. On his since-deleted Instagram account, the suspect describes himself as Italian and Iranian.
Under one picture, he mentions a book titled “Might is Right,” which is known for its anti-Semitic ideas. He goes on to write,”Why overcrowd towns and pave more open space to make room for hordes of mestizos and Silicon Valley white [expletive].”
“We’re compiling a list today of all the different victims and all the different locations,” said Smithee. “Once we’re able to look at that list then we can draw conclusions from that.”
Legan bought the AK-47-style rifle on July 9 legally in Nevada at Mike’s Guns and Ammo.
The owner of the gun shop wrote on social media,”I did not know this individual. He ordered the rifle off my internet page. When I did see him, he was acting happy and showed no reasons for concern. I would never sell any firearm to anyone who acted wrong or looks associated with any bad group like white power.”
During the news conference, authorities also said that they were no closer to determining whether there is a second suspect. They said a 20-year-old man who had been posting about being the gunman at the festival was questioned and determined to be a hoax.
Meanwhile, Legan’s family home in Gilroy has been searched, as well as a home in Nevada that he had been using days before the shooting. Police did not release whether they had discovered any evidence in both homes or whether the suspect’s family was cooperating.
“We have so many questions and they’re not going to be answered, the parents are not going to know the answers either you know so it’s really sad,” said a neighbor.