The woman suspected of opening fire at YouTube’s headquarters in San Bruno, California, on Tuesday during lunch break injuring three employees before killing herself was a disgruntled video-maker, Nasim Aghdam, 39, of San Diego, local media said citing police sources.
Police initially viewed the shooting at YouTube’s Cherry Avenue campus as a domestic incident, with the female shooter maybe targeting her boyfriend working there.
Aghdam was seen on a video of a website blasting YouTube for taking down some of her videos and for skimping on revenue driven by the traffic to her YouTube page.
“There is no equal growth opportunity on YOUTUBE or any other video-sharing site, your channel will grow if they want to!!!!!” Aghdam wrote. “Youtube filtered my channels to keep them from getting views!”
On Tuesday evening, her YouTube videos were taken down due to “multiple or severe violations of YouTube’s policy against spam, deceptive practices, and misleading content or other Term of Service violations,” according to the streaming video site.
YouTube declined to answer questions about Aghdam and her deleted accounts.
On an Instagram post last month, Aghdam had claimed YouTube was using its tools to “censor and suppress people who speak the truth.”
Her father Ismail Aghdam told media that two weeks ago, she had told the family that YouTube stopped compensating her for her videos.
Ismail said he filed a missing complaint with police on Monday as his daughter did not respond to his calls for two days. He also told them she might be heading to YouTube headquarters. He was not aware she was carrying a hand gun.
Early on Tuesday, police in Mountain View, California, found her asleep in a car in a parking lot and informed her family.
Around 12.46 pm, Aghdam opened fire and wounded three people before shooting herself. A fourth person also suffered an ankle injury while fleeing.
Panic and chaos spread throughout the campus after one employee tweeted “Active shooter at YouTube HQ.”
Some employees barricaded themselves in offices and conferences rooms while others fled the campus to a nearby restaurant for help. Among them was a female shot in the left calf in the courtyard.
Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital said of the three YouTube employees admitted there, a 36-year-old man is in critical condition because of blood loss. A 32-year-old woman is in serious condition while a 27-year-old woman is in fair condition.
President Donald Trump offered his condolences via Twitter: “Our thoughts and prayers are with everybody involved.”
Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google, which owns YouTube, said the company is doing everything it can to support the injured and their families.
The shooting comes as YouTube plans to modify its policy on gun sales this month by banning content that promotes the sale of guns and accessories like bump stocks, which modify guns to fire rapidly.