Sheriff in California shooting cites lessons from Pittsburgh synagogue massacre
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Sheriff in California shooting cites lessons from Pittsburgh synagogue massacre

Geoff Dean tells reporters he visited a Jewish house of worship after Tree of Life tragedy to ‘do something about the hate’

Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean speaks to reporters near the scene in Thousand Oaks, Calif., on Thursday, Nov. 8, 2018, where a gunman killed 12 people. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean speaks to reporters near the scene in Thousand Oaks, Calif., on Thursday, Nov. 8, 2018, where a gunman killed 12 people. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

The sheriff presiding over the investigation into a mass killing Thursday in Thousand Oaks, California, recalled his visit to a synagogue following last month’s synagogue massacre in Pittsburgh.

Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean spoke to the media Thursday after a gunman killed 12 people at a nightclub, including a police sergeant who was responding to the shooting. The shooter, a former US Marine who was believed to be suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, was killed. No motive is known.

“I went and spoke at a Jewish synagogue after the tragedy on the East Coast,” Dean said, referring to the mass shooting at the Tree of Life synagogue complex in Pittsburgh, in which an anti-Semitic gunman killed 11 worshipers.

“When I talked to the parishioners there, I followed up on the rabbi. I said, ‘We’ve got to do something about the hate and we’ve got to do something to just spread the love,’” Dean told reporters.

It’s not clear which rabbi Dean was referring to. The Tree of Life rabbi, Jeffrey Myers, since the shooting has called repeatedly for a tamping down of vitriol.

“Stop the words of hate,” Myers said at a memorial in Pittsburgh the day after the shooting.

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