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Alleged Shooter In California Left Vast Digital Trail

Elliot Rodger as seen in a YouTube video.
Elliot Rodger as seen in a YouTube video.

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office said the man suspected of a shooting rampage that left six dead near the University of California, Santa Barbara, is 22-year-old Elliot Rodger.

Sheriff Bill Brown had earlier on Saturday said a YouTube video titled "Elliot Rodger's Retribution" was connected to the crime.

In it, Rodger is sitting in a parked car with the sun low on the horizon. He talks about his frustration with women and says that at age 22, he was still a virgin.

"You never showed me any mercy, so I will show you none," he says, laughing. "I'll give you exactly what you deserve — all of you. All you girls who rejected me and looked down upon me and treated me like scum, while you gave yourself to other men. And all of you men for living a better life than me. All of you sexually active men. I hate you."

Rodger warns that this will be his last video and that he will "slaughter every single one of you."

Rodger seems to have left a vast digital trail. On his YouTube channel, for example, he uploaded multiple videos musing on his loneliness.

One video is titled, "Why do girls hate me so much?"

He wonders why it is that someone who owns a nice car, expensive glasses and is the "ultimate gentleman" cannot attract girls.

"I'm so magnificent. I deserve girls much more than all those slobs I see in my college, who are somehow able to walk around with beautiful girls," he says.

In a video uploaded on May 1, he writes: "I temporarily took all of my Vlog's down due to the alarm it caused with some people in my family. I will post more updates in the future."

A user who calls himself Elliot Rodger and uses the same picture, also posted to a bodybuilding message board expressing the same regrets.

Journalist Matthew Keys took a screen shot of one of the threads, in which Rodger says "feminism is evil."

"Women have control over which men get sex and which men don't, thus having control over which men breed and which men don't," the user writes. "Feminism gave women the power over the future of the human species. Feminism is evil."

On what appears to be his Google Plus profile, Rodger says that he was born in Britain and moved the U.S. at age 5. He writes that he is currently attending college at Santa Barbara City College, Moorpark College.

"I have tried very hard to fit in with the social scene there, but I have ultimately been unable to do so," he writes. "There are too many obnoxious people who have ruined my whole experience at that place."

What appears to be his Facebook profile is full of selfies that show an extravagant lifestyle — plane rides and movie premieres. There's also a picture uploaded on April 8, where a stern-looking Rodger poses with his father amid blooming flowers.

Rodger is the son of Hollywood director Peter Rodger, who was an assistant director on The Hunger Games.

The Associated Press spoke to Alan Shifman, an attorney who represents Elliot's father, Peter Rodger. Shifman told the wire service that Elliot Rodger "was diagnosed at an earlier age of being a highly-functional Asperger Syndrome child."

Shifman said that his parents were concerned a few weeks ago after watching a few YouTube videos "regarding suicide and the killing of people." Shifman said Rodger had "multiple therapists" and a social worker was concerned enough last week that she called police.

Authorities, however, interviewed him and concluded he was a "perfectly polite, kind and wonderful human."

The family's attorney told the AP that Rodger's father will dedicate his life to try to prevent these kinds of tragedies.

"This country, this world, needs to address mental illness and the ramifications from not recognizing these illnesses," Shifman told the AP.

Update at 11:30 a.m. ET. on Sunday: A Manifesto:

In our latest post this morning, we point to a 140-page autobiographical manifesto Rodger sent to police.

It's a misogynist tirade that echoes many of the statements made by his online persona. It also details a plan that sounds a lot like what happened Friday night.

At one point, he writes:

"I cannot kill every single female on earth, but I can deliver a devastating blow that will shake all of them to the core of their wicked hearts. I will attack the very girls who represent everything I hate in the female gender: The hottest sorority of UCSB."

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Eyder Peralta is NPR's East Africa correspondent based in Nairobi, Kenya.

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