Latest UCSB Violence “Sickens” Father of Slain Student

The father of a UC Santa Barbara student killed last year in a shooting rampage in Isla Vista said he was sickened when he heard that two UCSB students were injured in a shooting Monday night after fighting with two men who came to their apartment a few blocks from campus.

Richard Martinez was in Isla Vista this week to commemorate his son Christopher Ross Michaels-Martinez, 20, who was killed, along with five other students, in a stabbing and shooting rampage last May.

"I felt nauseous," said Martinez, who's been advocating for an end to gun violence in the U.S. "We've come to accept this as normal. It's appalling the level of gun violence that occurs everyday."

One university student was shot once in the stomach, the other once in the chest. The wounds were not life-threatening. Neither of the suspects are students, and the shootings had nothing to do with last year's killings in Isla Vista, authorities said.

Students were on edge.

"It's scary to find out what can go on just a couple of houses down from where you live," said Eric Curry.

Assemblyman Das Williams, D-Santa Barbara, issued a statement saying he was "deeply saddened and disappointed by the latest violence.

"My thoughts and prayers are with the community and those affected by this attack," he said. "Students, residents and families who live in Isla Vista deserve a safe place to call home."

One of the suspects fled, and the other was held by neighbors until police arrived. James Joshua Taylor, 22, of Lompoc was arrested and taken to a hospital for head injuries he got in the fight.

The second suspect drove away in a white sedan, prompting a search of the campus and a lockdown of student dormitories for more than an hour. The University texted and emailed emergency alerts to students urging them not to go outside.

"A community that was affected by gun violence is now fearful again last night that somebody is out to shoot and kill people again," Martinez said.

The alert was lifted after the second suspect was accounted for.

Jose Guadalupe Gutierrez, 19, tried to check himself into a hospital with unspecified injuries, saying he had gotten into a traffic accident on campus, Santa Barbara County sheriff's spokeswoman Kelly Hoover said. Authorities determined he was the second suspect, Hoover said.

He knew the victims, both in their early 20s. Their names were not released.

Investigators have not identified a motive for the shootings, but are exploring possible drug connections. A handgun was recovered at the scene.

Gutierrez and Taylor face charges including attempted murder, robbery and participation in a criminal street gang, Hoover said. It wasn't immediately known if they have lawyers.

The violence occurred in the same place as last May's rampage: a square-mile community of small apartments and houses that is home to thousands of university students. There, Elliot Rodger killed six UCSB students and wounded 14 other people before killing himself.

Rodger stabbed his two roommates and their friend, then gunned down two women outside a sorority house and shot a man standing in a deli as he drove through town, firing a semi-automatic handgun and plowing into pedestrians with his BMW.

Rodger, who wasn't a student or alumnus, had posted a manifesto and a series of online videos voicing contempt for everyone from his roommates to the human race but reserving special hate for two groups: the women he says kept him a virgin and the men they chose instead.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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