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YouTube shooter motive: Livid at YouTube censorship, visited gun range before shooting

Nasim Aghdam (YouTube)
April 04, 2018

The shooter who killed herself after opening fire at YouTube Headquarters in San Bruno, California, on Tuesday had visited a gun range prior to the shooting, police said Wednesday, and that Nasim Aghdam’s motive appeared to be that she was upset about YouTube’s policies and practices.

Aghdam, 38, went to YouTube HQ on Tuesday and opened fire, wounding three victims before shooting herself, police said.

The three victims were transported to Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital. According to a spokesperson, a 36-year-old male patient is in critical condition, a 32-year-old female victim is in serious condition, and another female victim, 27, is in stable condition.

The weapon Aghdam used, a Smith and Wesson 9mm semi-automatic handgun, was registered in her name, police said during a press conference Wednesday.

Police also said there is no evidence yet linking Aghdam to anyone at the scene of the shooting, and that the motive appears to be that Aghdam was not happy with YouTube’s practices and policies.

Aghdam had a heavy social media presence and appeared to be very angry and outspoken against YouTube for demonetizing her channel and creating a “filter” on what people see and don’t see.

She posted about YouTube repeatedly on what appears to be her website, www.nasimesabz.com. On the website, Aghdam was also a very outspoken vegan and animal rights activist.

According to one report, she ranted against YouTube often on her channel. The “About” section of her YouTube channel said: “Nasim the Persian Azeri female vegan bodybuilder, also animal rights activist promoting healthy and humane living. Nasim produced and launched the first Persian TV commercial and music video (Do You Dare) regarding animal rights and veganism through international Iranian satellite Television in 2010.”

ABC sources said she had previous addresses in both Riverside and San Diego, which are 430 miles and 500 miles away, respectively.

It was also reported Wednesday that police spoke to Aghdam on Monday after her she had gone missing – just hours before the shooting.

Nasim Aghdam (Facebook)

And, Aghdam’s brother had warned the police about his sister, too. Wishing not to be identified, he told CNN that he had called police to say “she went [to Mountain View, just north of San Bruno] all the way from San Diego, so she might do something.

“I Googled ‘Mountain View,’ and it was close to YouTube headquarters. And she had a problem with YouTube,” Aghdam’s brother told CNN.

YouTube’s Cherry Avenue offices in San Bruno, Calif., were the scene of a shooting on Tuesday, April 3, 2018, sparking a massive response by police and other first-responders. (Dreamstime/TNS)

Mountain View Police said they found Aghdam, 38, sleeping in her car in a Mountain View parking lot early Tuesday morning, and that they spoke to her.

“Our officers made contact with the woman after the license plate of her vehicle matched that of a missing person out of southern California,” Mountain View Police Spokeswoman Katie Nelson told The Mercury News. “The woman confirmed her identity to us and answered subsequent questions. At the conclusion of our discussion, her family was notified that she had been located.” Her family had been notified at 2 a.m. on Tuesday.

Aghdam’s family had reported her missing, and her father, Ismail Aghdam, had told police she “hated” YouTube and might possibly go to YouTube Headquarters.

“In an interview Tuesday night with the Bay Area News Group, Ismail Aghdam said his 38-year-old daughter told her family a couple of weeks ago that YouTube had been censoring her videos and stopped paying her for her content. ‘She was angry,’ he said in an interview from his Riverside County home,” The Mercury News reported.