A young man who witnessed the mass shooting at Borderline Bar Nightclub in Thousand Oaks, California, says he was able to rescue at least 30 people by smashing a window with a bar stool while the gunman was reloading.
“We probably pushed 30 or 35 people through that window,” hero Matt Wennerstrom said.
“Bar stools go through windows. It works. That’s all we could do,” Wennerstrom told the local ABC station. “The only thing I could have wished for was to have something better than a bar stool.”
STORY OF HEROISM: A young witness of the mass shooting at Borderline Bar Nightclub in Thousand Oaks, California says he was able to get at least 30 people to safety after he used a bar stool to smash a window while the gunman was reloading. pic.twitter.com/NRVxkh6Yj2
— ABC World News Now (@abcWNN) November 8, 2018
He said he grabbed “as many people as I could” and pulled them “under the table until I heard a break in the shots.”
He said the gunman was “tall, built, bigger figure, possibly wearing a vest or something.”
Blood was still visible on the sleeve of Wennerstrom’s shirt as he was being interviewed after his heroic act.
With blood still on the sleeve of his shirt, Matt Wennerstrom describes the mass shooting at the Borderline Bar & Grill. He says he threw a chair through a window allowing others to escape. @ABC7 pic.twitter.com/AnvYlSulhW
— Jory Rand (@ABC7Jory) November 8, 2018
The shooting happened just before Midnight Wednesday local time at Borderline Bar & Grill in Thousand Oaks, west of Los Angeles. Authorities said hundreds of people were inside the bar when the gunfire rang out.
The shooting left 12 people dead, including Ventura County sheriff’s sergeant Ron Helus, who is also being hailed a hero.
“He was willing to sacrifice his life for the sake of others,” Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean said of Sgt. Helus. “He ran into danger – he didn’t walk.”
Helus was a 29-year veteran of the department.
The suspect was killed inside the venue, authorities confirmed.
This story is still developing. Check back for updates.