Isla Vista shootings: Students return to class after college town rampage

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Classes resumed Wednesday at UC Santa Barbara following last Friday's killing spree in the small seaside community of Isla Vista.

Student Body President Aly Guthy said things are still far from normal on campus.

"Well, I feel like everyone is still trying to get back into the rhythm of things. That's not going to come easily," Guthy said. "We're still all in a period of grief and mourning and nothing will be the same for quite some time, but we're all trying to heal and work through it together."

Investigators have said 22-year-old Elliot Rodger stabbed three people to death before going on a shooting rampage, killing three more and injuring more than a dozen others.

RELATED: UCSB mourns after deadly rampage

The Associated Press reports that some students yelled at reporters to go home or cursed them, but many politely declined to speak as they rushed to class after the holiday weekend and Tuesday's suspension of classes for a memorial observance.

Sharon Tam, a sociology major from El Monte, told AP it was a depressing situation.

"I just feel like more insecure, I guess. And I really feel unsafe walking around IV," she said, referring to Isla Vista, the unincorporated off-campus community where many students live. "I did not like expect this in my life at all to ever occur. Especially like in my community," she said. "I just thought we were all just happy people, I guess."

Thousands mourned the deaths at the memorial service.

— Bianca Ramirez/KPCC and The Associated Press

The response from the capital

In Sacramento, two California Assembly members proposed legislation on Tuesday that would create a gun violence restraining order that could be sought from a judge by law enforcement at the request of family members and friends.

"When someone is in crisis, the people closest to them are often the first to spot the warning signs, but almost nothing can now be done to get back their guns or prevent them from buying more," said Democratic Assemblywoman Nancy Skinner of Berkeley, who sponsored the measure with Das Williams, D-Santa Barbara.

Currently, therapists can tell authorities when they fear a client is at risk of committing a violent act. However, there is no prohibition on firearms ownership unless someone has been involuntarily committed for mental health treatment.

Another proposal involves establishing statewide protocols for law enforcement officers who are called to check on mentally troubled people.

Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento, suggested that authorities should be required as part of such welfare visits to check whether a person has purchased weapons instead of just talking to the person.

Additional steps could include searching the individual's surroundings and talking to roommates, neighbors and relatives, he said.

"There is a lot we can do to prevent these kinds of horrific events in the future," said Steinberg, who has spent much of his time in the Legislature addressing mental health concerns.

State senators spent 35 minutes at the state Capitol eulogizing the students killed in the weekend violence and expressing frustration that such rampages continue despite previous efforts to end the problem.

The rampage came a month after sheriff's deputies had visited Rodger on a welfare check after his parents became concerned about his postings on YouTube.

— The Associated Press

AP reporters Raquel Maria Dillon and Don Thompson contributed to this report.

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