Updated Thursday, Dec. 3, 11:50 a.m. EST: President Barack Obama spoke about the San Bernardino, Calif., mass shooting Thursday morning, announcing that the investigation would be handed over to the FBI.
“At this stage we do not yet know why this terrible event occurred,” Obama said. “It is possible this was terrorist-related, but we don’t know. It is also possible that this was workplace-related.”
Obama acknowledged that the attackers were “equipped with weapons and appeared to have access to additional weaponry at their homes. But we don’t know why they did it.”
Obama offered encouragement to the nation, saying, “We’re going to get to the bottom of this, and … we are going to be viligant, as we always are, in getting the facts before we issue any decisive judgments in terms of how this occurred.”
With Obama as he made his statement were Vice President Joe Biden, U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch, FBI Director James Comey and National Security Adviser Susan Rice, among others.
Obama signaled the importance for “all of us, including our legislators, to see what we can do to make sure that when individuals decide that they want to do somebody harm, we’ll make it a little harder for them to do it, because right now it’s just too easy.”
Two suspects said to be involved in the terrifying mass shooting in San Bernardino, Calif., have been identified as a married couple who left their 6-month-old baby daughter with her grandmother before carrying out the massacre, NBC News reports.
Syed Rizwan Farook, 28, who was born in the U.S., and his wife, Tashfeed Malik, 27, were killed during a shootout with law enforcement several hours after they first started shooting at the Inland Regional Center on Wednesday, killing at least 14 and injuring 17 people.
Farook, a health inspector for the county health department, had reportedly been at a Christmas party at the state-run center, when he left “under some circumstances that were described as angry,” Police Chief Jarrod Burguan revealed on Wednesday.
However, authorities are not ruling out terrorism yet, since the couple were wearing tactical gear and armed with assault rifles at the time of their deaths. Burguan said, “There had to be some degree of planning.” Authorities also uncovered “an explosive device” inside the building during a secondary sweep. Only two of their four guns were bought legally, according to the news station.
“These people came prepared to do what they did as if they were on a mission,” Burguan said. “They were armed with long guns, not with handguns.”
According to Burguan, little is known about Malik or “where she is from.”
According to NBC, federal officials indicated that records show that Farook recently made a trip to Saudi Arabia. For now, however, the trip is thought to have been for purely religious reasons.
The distraught family of the suspects told NBC News that Farook and Malik left their small daughter with Farook’s mother on Wednesday, saying that they had a doctor’s appointment. The child’s grandparents became worried after they started getting calls from the media asking if they knew that Faroook was a suspect.
“I just cannot express how sad I am for what happened today,” Farook’s brother-in-law, Farhan Khan, said at a press conference held by the Council on American-Islamic Relations on Wednesday night. “I am in shock that something like this could happen.
“Why would he do something like this?” he said, adding that the couple had been married for about two years.
A third person was later detained by authorities, but according to NBC, it is undetermined if he or she was involved in the massacre.
Read more at NBC News.