Three people were killed and one other injured Monday in what authorities are calling a murder-suicide at an elementary school in San Bernardino, Calif. Cedric Anderson, 53, of Riverside, Calif., arrived at North Park Elementary School in San Bernardino, Calif., on Monday morning, where his estranged wife, Karen Elaine Smith, 53, worked as a special education teacher.
According to San Bernardino Police Chief Jarrod Burguan, Anderson was allowed access to the school after he signed into the school with proper ID and said he had to drop something off to his wife. Once inside his wife classroom, he opened fire with a .357 Magnum killing his wife and injuring two other students. 8-year-old Jonathan Martinez was hit by the gunfire and died on the way to the hospital. A 9-year-old was in stable but critical condition. Authorities do not believe that the children were targeted; they just happened to be in close proximity of Smith when she was shot. After killing his wife, Anderson killed himself with the same gun.
Anderson and Smith dated on-and-off for four years before they married back in January, but were already separated for a few weeks before Monday’s incident. Anderson was a Navy Veteran with a history of domestic violence and assault charges. According to Smith’s mother, Anderson was not the same person he was when the two were dating. Just a month into their marriage he accused Smith of cheating and he made threats to “throw her out a window,” before she decided to leave for good.
North Park Elementary will be closed Tuesday and Wednesday, and the school district plans to provide grief counseling for the children and administration.