Los Angeles

Media Tours Redlands Town House Rented by Couple Blamed for Mass Shooting

A landlord invited media into the Redlands, California, townhouse rented by the couple believed to have gone on a deadly shooting rampage in San Bernardino on Wednesday, now considered an act of terrorism.

A crib, toys, a child's book of the Quran, family pictures and shredded documents were some of the items found inside the home.

The FBI left behind documents such as search warrants and lists inside the home. There was a bed upstairs covered in passports, pictures and documents related to the suspects' family.

Authorities said Syed Rizwan Farook, 28, and his wife, Tashfeen Malik, 27, stockpiled 12 pipe bombs, tools to make more explosives and well over 4,500 rounds of ammunition on the property. The couple, who leaves behind a 6-month-old child, died in a shootout with police.

Documents obtained Thursday by NBC News show the garage "was set up as a bomb making facility including metal working equipment."

Investigators found elbow pipes, internal plugs and caps for the pipes, tape, wiring, wire strippers and cutters, a soldering gun and an electric drill. There was also at least one container of smokeless power and a number of miniature of Christmas tree lights with green insulated wire, NBC News reported.

Carol Kneche, the suspects' neighbor, was one of the people not part of the media who went inside the house. She said she never talked to and barely saw the suspects.

"I just think, wow, making bombs in my backyard practically, that's crazy," she said.

The massacre is considered an act of terrorism, according to David Bowdich, assistant director of the FBI in Los Angeles. Bowdich said the couple apparently crushed their cellphones and tried to erase their digital footprints before unleashing the deadly assault.

Many took to social media to criticize Friday's media tour, calling it an "investigative screwup" and a "media circus."

"Isn't very strange that journalists were able to access the apartment in Redlands, CA so soon after the shootings? What about evidence?" user @JohnLew tweeted.

"The Redlands police department is stupid smh letting people contaminate the evidence. People waking around the crime scene. Smh #sloppy," user @NavarreCali also tweeted.

Bowdich said in a news conference that the FBI obtained everything they needed in the search warrant that lasted from Wednesday until Thursday. Legally they had to turn it over to the homeowner, Bowdich said. The homeowner removed the board on the door and a crush of media followed him inside. Among the group were neighbors.

"The landlord evidently let them in this morning," said Laura Eimiller, FBI spokeswoman. "It's his prerogative regardless of how unusual. We have no say in a matter of private property once it's in custody of others."

A homeowners' association intervened and insisted the house be boarded back up.

Rosa Ordaz and Kristina Bugante contributed to this report.

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