3 killed, 5 wounded by retired police officer at California biker bar

Three people were killed and at least five others were wounded by a retired police officer after he opened fire in a popular Southern California biker bar Cook’s Corner in Trabuco Canyon on Wednesday night.

The shooting occurred at a little after 7 pm local time at the 140-year-old establishment.

According to a report by news agency AP citing Orange County Sheriff’s Sgt. Frank Gonzalez, deputies arrived at the bar two minutes after the shooting was reported and shot and killed the gunman.

The gunman was identified as John Snowling, 59. His wife Marie Snowling was also injured in the shooting. 

Marie Snowling’s father William Mosby has told The Orange County Register outside Providence Mission Hospital that his daughter was taken to UCI Medical Center after being shot, said the report.

John Snowling and three people were pronounced dead at the scene. Two of the six were in critical condition and the others were in stable condition.

According to the AP report, John was a retired officer with the Ventura Police Department. He worked at the police department from 1986 to 2014.

As per the report, Vocalist Debbie Johnson said that a local band M Street was playing on the indoor stage when the shooting happened. “We launched into our next song and somewhere in the middle of it this man just walks in, doesn’t say a word, and just starts shooting.” 

The Cook’s Corner, a place for motorcyclists to gather for live music or just a cold beer after a long ride, is known as the oldest biker bar in Southern California.

“It’s an absolute tragic event,” a report by Reuters said quoting Orange County Undersheriff Jeff Hallock. “This I know is probably weighing very heavy on the entire Trabuco Canyon community. Cook’s Corner is a staple in South Orange County.”

(With inputs from agencies)

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Updated: 25 Aug 2023, 01:23 AM IST

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