After a gunman held three people hostage at the Veterans Home of California in Yountville, considered one of the largest veterans homes in the nation, all four people were later found deceased after a lockdown and a seven-hour standoff. Police eventually identified the shooter as Albert Wong.
The Veterans Home was put on lockdown on Friday after there were reports of an active shooter in the facility. According to the Los Angeles Times, at the time of the incident, Department of Veterans Affairs spokesman Joshua Kiser issued the following statement:
“Law enforcement authorities have responded to the Yountville Veterans Home this morning following reports of gunfire near the main dining hall. The facility is on lockdown, and all residents and staff are sheltering in place. We will continue to update you as we get more information.”
Although SWAT, FBI, and ATF all responded to the incident, attempts to contact the suspect were unsuccessful. After seven hours, police eventually found Wong’s body as well as the bodies of the three victims, who were all female employees of the home, later identified as Christine Loeber, Dr. Jen Golick and Dr. Jennifer Gonzalez. It is believed that Wong originally had more than three hostages but allowed some to go free.
At this time, it is unknown if the victims were chosen at random or what Wong’s specific motive was. Although SWAT, FBI, and ATF all responded to the incident, they were not able to reach him.
According to NBC News, California Governor Jerry Brown also released the following statement:
“Anne and I are deeply saddened by the horrible violence at the Yountville Veterans Home, which tragically took the lives of three people dedicated to serving our veterans. Our hearts go out to their families and loved ones and the entire community of Yountville.”
Who is Albert Wong?
Wong, who was 36 years old at the time of the incident, was a decorated Army infantryman from Sacramento, serving in Afghanistan from 2011 to 2012, also earning four medals for his military career. He also had a security guard permit, a private investigator license, and firearms permits, one expired in 2017 and another expired in 2010. He was also believed to have been a patient at the veterans home that became the site of the shooting.
While unconfirmed, according to Oregon Live, Bob Golick, Jen Golick’s father-in-law, that she had ordered Wong’s removal from the Pathway program, in which he had been treated for PTSD.
Forensic examinations of the deceased are scheduled over the upcoming weeks.
As this is a developing story, more information will be updated as made available.