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Deputies Visited Calif. Gunman Month Before Slayings: Officials

Elliot Rodgers made a citizen's arrest after his roommate allegedly stole three candles valued at $22, officials said



    Santa Barbara sheriff’s deputies visited the Isla Vista shooting suspect a month before he went on a killing spree. Adrian Arambulo reports from Isla Vista for the NBC4 News at 11 on Saturday, March 24, 2014. (Published Sunday, May 25, 2014)

    Santa Barbara County sheriff’s officials said a man who embarked on a killing spree that left seven people dead and several others hurt in Isla Vista had three prior run-ins with authorities, including a mental health check at his home less than a month before the murderous rampage.

    At the request of a family member, deputies went to the home of Elliot Rodger, 22, on April 30 to check on his mental state, according to Sheriff Bill Brown. Deputies said Roger was “polite” and “shy,” and downplayed concerns over his well-being. Deputies cleared the call.

    “He did not meet the criteria for 5150,” said Brown, referring to the code for an involuntarily psychiatric hold.

    On Jan. 15, Rodgers contacted authorities and accused his roommate of stealing three candles valued at $22. Brown said Rodger made a citizen’s arrest and the roommate was booked, cited and released. The case was sent to the district attorney’s office, where a petty theft charge was filed.

    On July 21, 2013, authorities met with Rodger at a hospital, where he was being treated for injuries. Rodger claimed to be the victim of an assault, but a police officer who handled that incident said Rodger may have been the aggressor. No charges were filed.

    Rodger is suspected of stabbing three people to death at his apartment before killing three other people in shootings across Isla Vista on Friday, May 23. Rodger was later involved in a shootout with sheriff's deputies and died of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head, Brown said.