Goleta postal facility shootings
|Goleta postal facility shootings|
|Location||Goleta, California, United States|
|Date||January 30, 2006
~7:00 a.m. (UTC-09)
|Target||Santa Barbara Processing and Distribution Center|
|Spree shooting, mass murder-suicide|
|Weapons||S&W Model 915 (9mm)|
|Deaths||8 (including the perpetrator)|
|Motive||Mental illness suspected|
The Goleta postal facility shootings were a spree killing by Jennifer San Marco (December 6, 1961 – January 30, 2006), a former US Postal Service employee who shot and killed seven people in Goleta, California on January 30, 2006, before taking her own life.
On January 30, 2006, San Marco shot and killed her one-time neighbor, Beverly Graham, and then drove to the mail processing plant at which she previously worked in Goleta, California. San Marco entered the sprawling plant by driving through a gate behind another car. She gained entry to the building by taking an employee's identification badge at gunpoint in order to gain an electronic access to the secure staff entrance. She then told the employee to leave the premises.
In the parking lot, San Marco shot Ze Fairchild, 37, in the head with a handgun. She turned to Maleka Higgins and shot her at point-blank range. She then shot Nicola Grant. Some workers, after hearing gunshots, went to the windows to see what was happening. San Marco turned to them and smiled.
San Marco entered the building, which had around 80 employees and continuing firing. Walking into the complex, she shot supervisor Charlotte Colton. Colton was dragged into a room by a coworker, where she died. San Marco approached her old work station, encountering Lupe Swartz, who saw her coming. San Marco rapidly fired four shots into Swartz, killing her. Dexter Shannon, an Air Force veteran of the Vietnam War with grandchildren, was working with headphones on, therefore he didn't hear San Marco coming or the gunshots. He was fatally shot at point-blank range. San Marco then turned the gun on herself, fatally killing herself. The weapon was still clutched in her hands after she died, which forced the police to pry her fingers off the gun.
San Marco apparently believed that she was the target of a conspiracy centered at the Goleta postal facility, according to writings recovered from her house in New Mexico. A spokesman for the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office speculated that San Marco's paranoia and history of mental illness may have motivated her to commit the murders.
- Beverly Graham, 54
Post office shooting
- Ze Fairchild, 37 years old.
- Meleka Higgins, 28 years old.
- Nicola Grant, 42 years old.
- Charlotte Colton, 44 years old.
- Lupe Swartz, 52 years old.
- Dexter Shannon, 57
|Jennifer San Marco|
|Born||Jennifer San Marco
December 6, 1961
|Died||January 30, 2006
Goleta, California, United States
|Cause of death||Suicide by gunshot|
|Occupation||Former postal worker|
San Marco had previously worked as a dispatcher for the Santa Barbara Police Department in the mid-1990s, a job for which she underwent a background check and psychological evaluation. She left the job after several months, which was not unusual for the high-stress occupation. San Marco eventually went to work for the postal service as a clerk, but left on psychological disability following a 2003 incident in which she had to be removed from her workplace by police. San Marco subsequently moved to a small town in New Mexico sometime in 2004. According to colleagues, she had a history of making racially charged statements, and once attempted to start a publication entitled The Racist Press.
- Kasindorf, Martin (February 1, 2006). "Woman kills 5, self at postal plant". USA Today. Retrieved May 6, 2010.
- "Postal killer believed she was target of a plot". Associated Press. 3 February 2006. Retrieved 30 August 2010.
- "Postal Shooter's Bizarre Behavior". CBS News. February 2, 2006.
- Jennifer San Marco