LOS ANGELES – Before Elliot Rodger killed six people in a beachside California college community, the 22-year-old repeatedly talked online in videos about being sexually frustrated, alone and miserable.
Rodger’s family worried about him enough to call police about his videos on YouTube, saying they were alarmed by seeing him talk of suicide and killing people, family attorney Alan Shifman said Saturday. Three weeks later, Rodger stabbed three people at his apartment to death, gunned down two women outside a sorority and killed one more person outside a deli. Police believe he killed himself after a roving gunbattle with police.
“Tomorrow is the day of retribution,” Rodger said in a seven-minute video posted Friday, one of several videos dumped to YouTube over roughly two days. “The day in which I will have my revenge against humanity against all of you.”
The video was taken down Saturday with a message saying it violated the site’s terms of service.
“You deserve to be annihilated and I’ll give that to you,” Rodger said. “You never showed me any mercy, and so I will show you none. You forced me to suffer all my life, and now I’ll make you all suffer. I’ve waited a long time for this.”
Rodger detailed his plans in an extensive 141-page manifesto released Saturday and said he was nearly discovered by authorities who interviewed him after his family called police.
In five other videos, Rodger mused about his life and circumstances, complaining girls wouldn’t give him a chance to date them and instead preferred “stupid and obnoxious” guys. He complained he had never had sex or even kissed a girl.
“I’ve been going through college for 2 years now and in this 2 years I’ve had to rot in bleak and sad loneliness while other guys got to enjoy all of the pleasures of, you know, sex and socializing and partying,” Rodger said. “I’ve never had a taste of that because no girl has given me a chance.”
Christian Rivas, 19, a close friend of Rodger’s younger sister who lives around the corner from his mother, said Rodger struck him as odd when visiting on breaks from college.
“Every time he was there, he was in his room, hidden,” Rivas said, standing in his driveway in the middle-class Los Angeles neighborhood of West Hills.
“He didn’t socialize,” Rivas said. “Sometimes he’d drive around the neighborhood for no reason, just drive around in circles.”
Erin Mincks, who lives across the street from Rodger’s mother, said he would come home from school, unload bags and wash his black BMW in the driveway. He was most recently home about two months ago, she said.
“It’s very sad, very heartbreaking, shocking, very shocking that someone could live so close to you and you have no idea what’s going on,” Mincks said.
Rodger said in a Youtube comment posted three weeks ago that he temporarily took down all his video blogs because of the alarm it caused some people in his family. He repeated the assertion on a video titled “Why do girls hate me so much” posted Friday, saying he re-uploaded the video after taking the last one down because it gained too much negative attention. Rodger tweeted a video with the same title April 20.
A photo posted to Facebook, Google Plus and YouTube in December showed Rodger in a black BMW with the same license plate as the car involved in the shootings and crash. The photo was used as the cover photo of Rodger’s YouTube channel while another Facebook photo from the same profile was used as an avatar photo. The Facebook account also includes an April 8 photo that appears to show Rodger with his father, Peter Rodger, a Hollywood director who contributed to the first installment of “The Hunger Games” series.
Sheriff Bill Brown called the gunman “mentally disturbed” and said it was “very apparent of the severe extent of how disturbed Mr. Rodger was.”