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Mass Shooting In Thousand Oaks: California Takes Personal Turn for PLNU Student As The Life of a Friend is Lost

According to the National Gun Archive, there have been nearly as many mass shootings as days in the year since Jan. 1, 2018.

On the night of Wednesday, Nov. 7, a shooter opened fire on a country-western themed college night at Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks, CA. The shooter, identified as Ian David Long, took 12 lives including that of Sgt. Ron Helus, a Ventura County sheriff’s sergeant.

Long was also killed, but it was not immediately available if the wound was self-inflicted or from law enforcement.

For Sarah Mutz, a junior at PLNU studying biology and theater, the event not only took place in her hometown, but also took the life of one of her good friends.

Mutz had discussed going to Borderline over Christmas break with her friend from home, Noel, who visited the bar regularly.

“Thursday morning when I woke up, I just started texting more people from my church […] and found out that my friend Noel was missing, and no one knew where she was,” said Mutz. “I was just worried because she was the one person I knew went on a regular basis. It was a place she hung out at all the time.”

Mutz’s church had a search team looking for Noel the night of the shooting but found out the the following day that Noel had passed away. Mutz received a text message from a friend with the information.

“In that moment, I just started breaking down,” said Mutz. “It hurt a lot just because it’s strange, but also sad to have someone that you’ve known for years and all of the sudden they’re just gone.”

Mutz added that Noel’s mother had gone into back surgery on the morning of the shooting and woke up to hear the news of her daughter’s passing.

“To find out that when you went into surgery like it was just going to be surgery and that was it,” said Mutz. “Then you wake up finding out that there was a shooting and your daughter’s gone. It’s just heartbreaking.”

Law enforcement is investigating and motive for the shooting is unknown at this time.

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Emilyn Giddings

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