A targeted attack that left four dead, including a 9-year-old boy, at a Southern California office building marked the third time in less than three weeks the country has been rocked by a mass shooting.

Police say the suspect in the Wednesday evening massacre knew his victims and locked gated entryways into the office suite in Orange, about 30 miles south of Los Angeles, before opening fire. Victims were found in various areas of the building, including the boy, who was found dead in the arms of a woman believed to be his mother, officials said.

The massacre is the latest in a string of mass shootings across the country after a lull in such high-profile attacks amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The four victims were killed just a week after a gunman in Boulder, Colorado, killed 10 people at a supermarket. The week before that, a gunman in the Atlanta area killed eight people, most of them women of Asian descent, at three spas.

The Orange Police Department started getting calls about a shooting around 5:30 pm local time. Officers were at the scene within two minutes but found that both entrances to a gated courtyard entryway had been locked with a bicycle cable lock, Lt. Jen Amat said at a news conference Thursday.


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