Hundreds of Employees Return to Site of San Bernardino Mass Shooting

The building in which 14 people were killed in the Dec. 2 mass shooting will remain closed indefintely

Hundreds of employees are returning Monday to San Bernardino's Inland Regional Center for the first time since a mass shooting at a holiday party left 14 people dead.

Monday's reopening will include emotional reunions for many of the workers who have not visited the site since a brief visit to collect belongings after the attack. The workers are looking forward to a renewed a sense of stability, according to Lavinia Johnson, the center's executive director.

"It is good to be back at our home," said Johnson. "We want to continue with the normalcy."

Two buildings at the campus of the Inland Regional Center, which provides health services in San Bernardino County, reopened Monday, about a month after the terror attack. A third building, the location of the Dec. 2 shooting, will remain closed indefinitely, the IRC said in a statement.

Security guards checked employee IDs at the entrance to the center's parking lot. No visitors were planned this week, and a chain-link fence wrapped in green mesh surrounding the property will remain up indefinitely, Johnson said.

Flowers, cards, balloons and other items have been left outside the building to honor the vitims. Returning workers will be greeted by staff members and counselors will be on site, Johnson said.

The shooting occurred during a staff holiday party at the IRC's main campus on South Waterman Avenue. County employee Syed Rizwan Farook and his wife, Tashfeen Malik, opened fire on Farook's coworkers, killing 14 and injuring 22. Authorities believe the two were radicalized and said Malik posted allegiance to an ISIS leader on social media just prior to the attack.

Farook and Malik were killed hours later in a shootout with law enforcement agents.

IRC, the largest of 21 regional centers in California, is a nonprofit agency that serves clients who have developmental disabilities in a vast area of San Bernardino County.

After the shooting, the buildings were closed for repairs, which will soon be complete. Some operations were moved off-site and about 350 iPads will be distributed to employees, allowing them remote access to email, voicemail, records and client information.

As employees return to work on Monday, California Gov. Jerry Brown is expected to attend a private memorial service in Ontario to honor the shooting victims.

Contact Us