It's still a mystery why two people opened fire on a center for the developmentally disabled in San Bernardino, California Wednesday, killing 14 people and injuring many more. But details are beginning to emerge about the suspects, who have been identified by authorities as Syed Rizwan Farook, 28, an environmental inspector born in Illinois, and his wife, Tashfeen Malik, 27.
Contrary to earlier reports of three shooters, they are likely the only two suspects, according to the Associated Press, and they both were killed in a shootout with police. "We are reasonably confident at this point that we have two shooters and we have two suspects," police chief Jarrod Burguan said at a late-night press conference.
Not much is known about Malik at this point. Farhan Khan, Farook's brother-in-law, said at a press conference that they had just spoken a week ago, and had "absolutely no idea why he would do that."
According to the New York Times, the event at the center was a holiday party for Farook and his coworkers at the San Bernardino County Public Health Department, where he had worked for five years. Farook stormed out of the party, but it's unclear why. His coworker, Patrick Baccari, said he suddenly disappeared from the table during the holiday party, leaving his coat on his chair, right before the group was to take a photo, according to the Los Angeles Times.
But when he returned, Malik was with him, and they were dressed in "tactical gear" and carrying "assault-style" weapons, according to police. "They came prepared to do what they did, as if they were on a mission," Burguan said in a press conference Wednesday afternoon. Two of their four guns had been bought legally, according to NBC News, and there were also pipe bomb-style devices found on the scene, ABC News adds. Police are considering workplace violence and terrorism as two of many possible motives.
Before the attack, Farook and Malik dropped off their 6-month-old daughter with his mother, telling her they were going to a doctor's appointment, according to the New York Times. Coworkers described Farook as reserved and quiet, but well-liked. Farook, whose parents are from Pakistan, had reportedly recently traveled to Saudi Arabia and brought back a wife he met online, though that has not been confirmed.