Saturday, April 7, 2012

Photographing a Mass Murder in Oakland

By Doug Oakley
Staff Writer
Bay Area News Group
When I got the call to head over to Oakland on the morning of April 2, I learned from our photo editor that five had been reported shot dead. So I thought about what that meant to me as I drove south from Berkeley on Interstate 80. I like to mentally prepare for these kinds of things, even if I only have a few minutes. 

By the end of the day, the death toll was seven and is the worst mass killing in Oakland's history. When I got there, police had not yet arrested One L. Goh, the alleged shooter, in nearby Alameda, so  the scene was very tense. 

Oakland Police and federal agents were zooming around everywhere. Television news helicopters filled the sky. A line of ambulances was waiting. Bodies lined the grassy street median. 

In the first hour or so after the shooting was reported, police thought the shooter was still on the loose, either in the school building or lurking in the area. I don't think I've ever seen so many guns in one place, and I've been to a few crime scenes in the last few years. 

Here are my pics.
Oakland police walk by bodies lined up in the grassy street median. (Photo by Doug Oakley)

A woman is comforted following the shooting as the two talk to an Oakland police officer. (Photo by Doug Oakley)

Ambulances wait for victims. (Photo by Doug Oakley)

A paramedic helps a young man following the shooting. (Photo by Doug Oakley)

Oikos University (Photo by Doug Oakley)

Heavy federal firepower. (Photo by Doug Oakley)

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