Deputies Shoot, Kill Workplace Gunman Suspect: Report

More than 24 hours after the shooting in Cupertino, a suspect has been shot.

By RJ Middleton
|  Thursday, Oct 6, 2011  |  Updated 8:13 AM PDT
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Sheriff Laurie Smith explains exactly what happened Wednesday morning that lead to a massive manhunt in Cupertino and Sunnyvale.

NBC Bay Area

Sheriff Laurie Smith explains exactly what happened Wednesday morning that lead to a massive manhunt in Cupertino and Sunnyvale.

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Raw Video: Sunnyvale SWAT Swarms Neighborhood

Police said a man walked into a meeting at his workplace in Cupertino at 4 a.m. Wednesday and opened fire. That sparked a massive manhunt that included a house to house search in Sunnyvale.
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Updated: According to early reports, shortly after resuming the manhunt this morning, Santa Clara County sheriff's deputies report that multiple shots have been fired at the suspect, with the suspect killed near the 900 block of Lorne Way in the city of Santa Clara.

An "officer assist" call was reported at 7:41 a.m. this morning, according to an emailed report from authorities.

We have crews en route to the scene.

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As night fell in the South Bay on Wednesday, a man who opened fire on nine co-workers remained on the loose. Authorities will resume the search this morning at daybreak.

At 7 p.m. Wednesday, Santa Clara County Sheriff Laurie Smith said the search would continue, but that the intense manhunt in Sunnyvale was wrapping up. She said SWAT officers had searched extensively near Homestead and Wolfe Roads but could not find the man they were looking for after a 12-hour effort. By 8 p.m. all roads were reopened and residents were allowed back into and out of their homes.

The suspect has been identified as Shareef Allman, 47, San Jose. Smith said he was a disgruntled employee of a rock quarry who opened fire on coworkers early Wednesday.

Police said Allman walked into a routine safety meeting at 4:15 a.m. at Lehigh Permanente cement plant in Cupertino -- then left the meeting, returned carrying a handgun and an assault rifle and opened fire, according to Santa Clara County sheriff's deputies. Inside that meeting room, nine people were shot. Smith said in an earlier news conference that two people died at the scene and one was declared dead at the hospital. Smith said some of the other injuries were considered critical. She said about 15 people were in the meeting when the gunman opened fire.

During her 7 p.m. news conference Smith identified the dead as:

  • Manual Pinon, 51, of Newman, Calif.
  • John Vallejos, 51, of San Jose
  • Mark Munoz, 59, of San Jose

The sheriff said the suspect left the scene of that workplace shooting in his car.

Three hours later and five miles away, police said the suspect ditched his car near Homestead and Wolfe Road and attempted a carjacking in a nearby Hewlett-Packard parking lot. The sheriff said he shot the female driver in the leg there and took off on foot to a nearby neighborhood in Sunnyvale.  The shooting victim is expected to fully recover.

For the next several hours police swarmed the neighborhood across the street from the HP campus using SWAT and armored vehicles. The teams made a systematic house-to-house search. Reverse 911 calls went out to people who lived in the area telling them to stay inside the homes. Schools in the area were also on lockdown for the day and cancelled after-school activities sending students home and requiring their parents to pick them up in person.

Santa Clara County issued a recorded warning to residents living in the area of the manhunt, as well (available here).

Sheriff Smith said that authorities had recovered four weapons, but still considered Allman armed and dangerous. Her raw interview can be viewed at the top of this page.

[Allman was a host for a San Jose cable channel, seen here interviewing Jesse Jackson.] Allman was one of 130 community producers at CreaTV. He is not an employee, according to a statement from CreaTV.

A brother of two shooting victims -- one injured, one deceased -- told NBC Bay Area that his brothers were union leaders. He blamed tense labor-relations at the quarry for the shooting.

Police also swarmed Stonegate apartments in San Jose. That is where Allman lived with his teenage daughter, who neighbors said just graduated from high school.

Police sealed off the door to their unit. Neighbor Paulette O'Conner told NBC Bay Area's Marianne Favro that Allman was disgruntled with his work over a recent shift change.

Favro said while she was in the complex a car that was parked in the spot assigned to Allman's unit suffered a flat tire while backing out of the space. Favro said the car had a spike strip, or rat trap, placed under its tire. It was not clear if police had placed it there or it was there prior to the police's arrival.

People who identified themselves as longtime friends of Allman were shocked to hear that the gunman they heard about on the news was their friend. They pleaded with him to give himself up and told him to think of his daughter.

One man named Mitchell Julien said something horrible must have happened for Allman to snap. His raw interview is below.

Authorities set up two phone lines in connection to the shootings.

  • Family Assistance Center 408-777-3200
  • Tips 408-808-4500

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