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Gunman’s Wife Was Likely 1st Victim Of Rancho Tehama Shootings

The wife of the Rancho Tehama gunman was apparently found dead inside their home, bringing the death toll to six. Tehama County Assistant Sheriff Phil Johnston says investigators found the body of the shooter’s wife hidden under the floor. Investigators believe that killing was the start of the rampage. A neighbor who became one of the first victims told a judge earlier this year that she and her family lived in fear of him. Hailey Poland said in a request for a restraining order that the man was violent and unpredictable, firing off guns at all hours and threatening her with horrible things. After the killings of his wife and neighbors, the gunman headed for Rancho Tehama Elementary School, continuing the carnage along the way. Officials say there would have been “a horrific bloodbath” if not for the quick action of teachers and a custodian who rushed children inside and locked the doors when they heard the approaching gunshots. Inside, children and some parents huddled under desks as bullets riddled the portable classrooms.Officials credit school personnel for quickly jumping into lockdown mode with saving dozens of children. the school will be closed until after the Thanksgiving holiday. Johnston said Wednesday that not being able to enter the school frustrated the man and drove him to find victims elsewhere. He killed five people and wounded at least 10 at different locations around Rancho Tehama Reserve before being fatally shot by a Corning Police Officer and a Tehama County Deputy. A judge had barred the gunman from having guns after he was charged with stabbing a woman earlier this year. Court records also show that he was charged with illegally firing a weapon and possessing an illegal assault rifle in January. The 44-year-old was charged at that time with five felonies and two misdemeanors. The court records show a judge in February ordering him to stay away from the woman who was stabbed and her mother-in-law. As part of that protective order, he was barred from having guns. Assistant Sheriff Johnston said Wednesday that police went to the man’s home several times for reports that he was shooting guns, but they never saw him with the weapons. He reportedly had two homemade semi-automatic weapons and two handguns registered in someone else’s name. Wednesday night dozens of people came out despite rain and cold to honor the victims.Clergy led prayers, including some for 6-year-old Alejandro Hernandez, who had the most serious injuries at the school.His Aunt, Rosa Monroy, said he’s at a hospital awaiting foot surgery. It’s not clear when they will operate on the more serious wound to his chest and arm. The director of the Red Bluff group “Alternatives to Violence” calls the shootings “the aftershocks of domestic violence”. Jeanne Spur points out that at least 4 other Tehama County women have been shot to death by their partners in the last 3 years.