Witnesses describe chaotic scene during Thousand Oaks shooting

 foxnews.com  11/8/2018 9:51:50 AM  2  Bradford Betz

A gunman opened fire in a crowded Southern California bar late Wednesday, injuring at least six people -- including one officer, authorities said.

Ventura County Sheriff Capt. Garo Kuredjian told reporters the victims were transported to a hospital but would not confirm their status.

A man who said he was at the Borderline Bar & Grill in Thousand Oaks told ABC News that he watched a man shoot into the crowd.

"I was at the front door and I was talking to my stepdad," said John Hedge, of Moorpark. "I just started hearing these big pops. Pop, pop, pop. There was probably three or four. I hit the ground. I look up - the security guard is dead. Well, I don't want to say he was dead, but he was shot. He was down. The gunman was throwing smoke grenades all over the place. I saw him point to the back of the cash register...and he just kept firing. I ran out the front door."

Witnesses told ABC News the suspect fired several shots from a handgun before tossing smoke bombs and firing again. Police told The Los Angeles Times that about 30 shots were fired.

Erica Sigman told the station she heard "loud" and "very fast, very rapid" gunshots.

"There were strangers holding my hand, saying 'you're going to be OK,'" she said. "Even though there's bad in this world, there's a lot of good people," she said.

Another witness estimated the gunshots lasted "a good thirty seconds."

She said the gunman was wearing a "ski mask over his face, but only the bottom half" and wore a black baseball hat. She said he appeared to know how to reload his gun and did it with ease.

Thousand Oaks is about a 40-minute drive west of Los Angeles.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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