YouTube Headquarters Shooting: Female Suspect Dead, Multiple Victims Confirmed

Police in tactical gear walk outside of the YouTube headquarters on April 3, 2018 -Getty- H 2018
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Employees inside the building were evacuated as local authorities arrived on the scene.

A female shooter opened fire at YouTube's headquarters on midday Tuesday, San Bruno (California) Police Chief Ed Barberini said in a press conference. Several hundred employees evacuated from the premises and multiple victims of gunshot wounds have been transported to area hospitals. The suspect died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, he added. 

Barberini called the shooting "a pretty hectic scenario." He said he could not confirm whether any of the victims or the shooter are employees of YouTube. 

In a statement released late on Tuesday afternoon, the San Bruno Police Department said it arrived at the YouTube campus shortly before 1 p.m. PT after receiving multiple calls about gun fire. They first encountered a victim with what appeared to be a gunshot wound "to a lower extremity" in the front of the building. Inside the building was a woman with a possible self-inflicted gunshot wound who was already dead when police arrived. Police also identified two other victims who had fled to a business next door. 

Three of the victims were transported to Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital with more expected, according to Brent Andrew, the chief communications officer for the hospital. During a press conference on Tuesday afternoon he identified the patients as a 36-year-old male in critical condition, a 32-year-old woman in serious condition and a 27-year-old woman in fair condition. The condition or whereabouts of the fourth victim, who police said did not have gunshot wounds, are unknown.

Andrew earlier told The Hollywood Reporter that "a number of patients with gunshot wounds" had been received at the hospital as part of an active shooter situation at YouTube headquarters south of San Francisco. He said that, while no patients were "dead on arrival," he was informed by authorities that the incident was fatal. Campbell also said he did not believe that the gunshot wounds came from an AR-15 or AK-47.

During a second press conference at San Francisco General Hospital, Dr. Andrew Campbell confirmed that all three victims were awake and "shocked like we are every time these terrible things happen." He also confirmed that the patients were being treated for gunshot wounds and that, in some cases, there were multiple injuries. 

San Bruno police responded to 9-1-1 calls about an active shooter on the YouTube campus on Tuesday afternoon. The San Mateo County Sheriff's office also reported to the scene. Nearly an hour after YouTube employees first began to tweet about the incident, the San Francisco Field Division of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives stated that it was responding to a reported shooting at YouTube headquarters. 

YouTube, which is owned by Google, operates out of San Bruno, a suburb of San Francisco that is about 10 miles from the city. The world's largest video streaming site has several hundred employees but it is unclear how many of them are based out of the headquarters, as YouTube also has large operations in Los Angeles, New York and London.

One YouTube staffer who asked not to be named tells THR that lunch was just wrapping up when fellow employees began sprinting through the parking lot. YouTube employees evacuated to another building, the staffer added. 

YouTube employees began to tweet about the incident on Tuesday afternoon. One Twitter user, Vadim Lavrusik whose bio says he works in product at YouTube, tweeted at 12:57 p.m. PT that he heard shots and saw people running. About 20 minutes later, he tweeted that he had been evacuated.

Another, a product manager named Todd Sherman, tweeted that he was sitting in a meeting when he heard people running. "Seemed serious and not like a drill," he continued. He also claimed to see blood on the floor and stairs.

Employees of surrounding businesses are sharing photos on social media of police attempting to enter buildings on the YouTube campus. 

Google tweeted that it was "coordinating with authorities" and will provide official information via its Twitter account "as it becomes available." Several hours after the incident ended, Google CEO Sundar Pichai released a statement via Twitter. "We are very actively monitoring and working with local authorities and hospitals," he wrote. "It's with great sadness that I tell you — based on the latest information — four people were injured in this horrific act of violence. We're doing everything we can to support them and their families at this time." 

He continued: "I know a lot of you are in shock right now. Over the coming days, we will continue to provide support to help everyone in our Google family heal from this unimaginable tragedy. Let's everyone come together now to support [YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki] and the YouTube team."

Wojcicki also tweeted on Tuesday, "There are no words to describe how horrible it was to have an active shooter @YouTube today. Our deepest gratitude to law enforcement & first responders for their rapid response. Our hearts go out to all those injured & impacted today. We will come together to heal as a family."

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos responded to the event, tweeting, "Horrible and truly tragic day for YouTube and Google. We are wishing all our very best for the injured and all those affected."

During a call on Wednesday, Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg also responded: "Silicon Valley is a tight-knit community. We all have a lot of friends over there at Google and YouTube. We’re thinking of everyone over there and everyone affected by the shooting."