Ian David Long, who killed 12 people at a Thousand Oaks bar on Wednesday, was described by his former high school track coach as a “ticking time bomb.”
Evie Cluke, who coached Newbury Park High School’s track team in 2007 and 2008, told the Associated Press that Ian David Long was “sadistic” and “out of control” as a student.
She said she saw Long assault a coach, Dominique Colell, after she would not return a cell phone. In the incident, he “grabbed her rear and midsection,” AP wrote.
Long also used his hand to pretend to shoot Colell, Cluke said to AP.
“When Dominique turned around and saw that, she turned pale as a ghost and it was very, very scary.” Cluke said. “Just sadistic. … He was out of control. He would scream and cuss and his face would turn bright red and people would actually back away from him.”
Cluke said she reported Long to school administrators multiple times, but he was never reprimanded.
Colell threw Long off the track team, but the boy’s track coach asked her to reconsider because it might affect Long’s plan to join the Marines. Additionally, AP wrote, the head track coach told Colell she didn’t have the authority to kick Long off the team.
Cluke and her father, who was also a track coach at the school, talked to Long about his plans to be in the military.
“He said he wanted to be in the Marines because he wanted to go fight in the war for our country and he wanted to kill for our country,” she told AP. “When you hear somebody say they want to be in the military because they want to kill people in the name of our country, that’s chilling. It chilled me right down to my bones.”
She also told AP that the inaction of authority figures enabled the Thousand Oaks shooting to take place.
“The warning signs were there,” she said to the outlet.