A day after a vigil for the 14 victims killed in last week’s San Bernardino shooting, a few more details about the people responsible for their deaths, as well as many more unanswered questions, have trickled out.
Several news outlets have reported that Syed Farook received a $24,500 loan from online lender Prosper shortly before attacking his office’s holiday party. Farook’s salary in 2013, according to NBC News, was $52,000. The money was deposited into Farook’s account on November 18, per Fox News.
Investigators are also trying to access data on the cell phones and laptops of Farook and his wife, Tashfeen Malik. However, the phones were destroyed before the suspects died in a shoot-out with police, and, according to NBC News, some of the data on them may have been encrypted. According to the Washington Post, Farook’s online activity might show that he was looking at jihadist propaganda. Footage from surveillance cameras around the San Bernardino area is also being processed by the authorities. According to CBS News, the rented SUV that the suspects used to temporarily evade police was seen at a mall a day before the attack. Several people had also been visiting the couple’s garage/bomb factory in the weeks before the attack, per NBC News, and are of great interest to investigators.
On Monday, the FBI told reporters it was “not prepared to discuss Mr. Marquez at this point.” Enrique Marquez once lived next to Farook, and purchased the two rifles used in the attack back in 2011 and 2012. Authorities are trying to figure out if he knew anything about the attack. ABC News talked to someone at a local mosque who said that Marquez started going there three or four years ago and that he seemed “shy and polite.” Another person told the Post that he seemed like a “decent person.” Marquez, a security guard at Walmart, checked himself into a mental hospital on Friday and was interviewed by investigators a few days later.
The bombs themselves have also left a bunch of question marks that the authorities are trying to solve. A bundled trio of pipe bombs was recovered by police at the Inland Regional Center. According to the Los Angeles Times, investigators think the bomb may have been designed to go off when first responders arrived on the scene. The bomb never went off, perhaps because it got soaked when the conference room’s sprinklers went off.
The Post reports that the Facebook message announcing Malik’s support of ISIS may have in fact included her husband, too. Although some of the syntax in the post confused the authorities, they believe it said “We pledge allegiance” to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, a leader of ISIS. “It’s looking like they were on the same path at the same time,”a federal official told the Post.
On Monday evening, the residents of San Bernardino held a candlelight vigil for the 14 people killed in the shooting.
The event was held at the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors building, which county employees returned to for the first time on Monday. Hundreds more gathered at Cal State, San Bernardino, where Dany Doueiri, an associate professor at the Center for Islamic and Middle East Studies, told the crowd, “I hope we can all rise … with hope and wisdom to fight ignorance with knowledge, to fight violence with compassion and to fight hate with love … There is still goodness in humanity.”
Shelby Swank, an alumnus at the ceremony, told the Los Angeles Times that she and her fellow residents were still optimistic about the city’s future. “I feel like we’re the Leslie Knope of San Bernardino … I think that’s why we stay because we know that eventually it’s going to come back off the ground.”
As San Bernardino deals with the unexpected change it has been forced to reckon with, Riverside Magnum Range, where Farook did some target practice in the days before the shooting, says it has no plans to do anything differently in the future. “We can’t succumb to their threats,” firearm instructor John Galletta told The Press-Enterprise, adding that he didn’t believe that Malik or Marquez ever visited the range. “We can’t succumb to these people having access to a free world and committing crimes … These people, these victims … probably would have been alive had somebody had a concealed weapon and could have acted. These people were sitting ducks.”