MAN BEHIND SAN BERNADINO SCHOOL SHOOTING WAS A PASTOR AND CONSIDERED TO BE “DEEPLY RELIGIOUS”

A teacher and an 8-year-old boy were shot and killed Monday morning at a San Bernardino elementary school when the teacher’s husband opened fire inside a special needs classroom before turning the gun on himself, police said.

Cedric Anderson, 53, of Riverside entered a classroom at North Park Elementary School and opened fire on his wife, Karen Elaine Smith, 53, about 10:30 a.m., said San Bernardino Police Chief Jarrod Burguan. He did not speak, and reloaded the weapon before shooting himself, Burguan said.

Anderson was a pastor who attended community meetings in Southern California, said Najee Ali, a community activist in Los Angeles and executive director of Project Islamic Hope.

Pastor Cedric Anderson

“He was (a) deeply religious man. I met him at a few events. I know he preached on the radio a little,” she said. “There was never (any) signs of this kind of violence … on his Facebook he even criticized a man for attacking a woman.”

Court records, however, told a different story. Anderson was charged with assault and battery in Los Angeles County in July 2013. Two months earlier, he had been charged with brandishing a firearm and disturbing the peace, records show. All charges were dismissed roughly one year later, after a jury trial had been scheduled, according to electronic court records.

Police began searching homes in Riverside and Bakersfield in connection with the shooting on Monday afternoon, according to Eileen Hards, a San Bernardino police spokeswoman. She declined to elaborate.

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