Police in California have been giving more details about a murderous rampage at a Christmas party in a suburb of Los Angeles, which claimed at least eight lives. A man dressed as Santa Claus opened fire on guests at his former in-laws’ house in Covina before setting it ablaze. The only suspect is 45 year-old Bruce Jeffrey Pardo, whose body was later found nearby. Police say he committed suicide. Investigators do not yet know how many of the victims died in the shooting, or in the fire.
Lt. Pat Buchanan from Covina police said: “It looks like it was planned. It looks like he arrived with at least two handguns and this device that somehow propelled a flammable liquid throughout the downstairs area of the residence.” Two girls were wounded. An 8-year-old was shot in the face, and a 16-year-old was shot in the back as she tried to flee. Other guests jumped from second floor windows to escape the flames. Detectives say Pardo had just been through a difficult divorce with his wife of one year, and they believe that is what prompted the attack.