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Things We Saw Today: Thousand Oaks Shooter Once Allegedly Sexually Assaulted His High School Track Coach

As much of the media is struggling to find a motive for this week’s mass shooting at the Borderline Bar & Grill in Thousand Oaks, California, much has been made of Ian David Long’s possible PTSD having served as a Marine. PTSD is very real and we’re not going to diminish the potential effects of that disorder, but according to Dominique Colell, Long’s high school track coach, his scary, violent behavior was evident long before he entered the Marine Corps.

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According to Colell, Long attacked her during his senior year, when she when a cell phone and was trying to figure out whose it was.

“Ian came up and started screaming at me that was his phone,” she told CBS Los Angeles. “He just started grabbing me. He groped my stomach. He groped my butt. I pushed him off me and said after that — ‘you’re off the team.’”

“He attacked me,” she says. “He attacked his high school track coach. Who does that?”

While it is both distressing and unsurprising that a mass shooter had a history of violence towards women, it is equally upsetting (and, yes, unsurprising) to hear that Colell was convinced not to file a formal complaint so as not to ruin the boy’s future in the Marine Corps. She says she was encouraged by both other coaches and the school–meaning the administration knew about the incident–to keep quiet.

We must stop ignoring these men’s dangerous behavior so as “protect their future.” It cannot be women’s responsibility to save violent men from themselves, or to then save others from those men. (via CBS LA)

  • The fires in Los Angeles and the surrounding areas are terrifying and devastating homes; the city’s zoo is preparing to evacuate; and the Paramount Ranch, featured in so many projects, from Dr. Quinn to Westoworld, has burned down. (via THR)
  • New York Times correspondent posted on Twitter yesterday that he doesn’t know what gaslighting means and he wants people to use “actual English words.” The sexist was obvious, since the word has come back (yes, back) into popularity largely because women are talking about their experiences with it. He got promptly dragged by Twitter, including one of my favorite subtly snarky sub-tweeters: the dictionary.

  • John Boyega and Leticia Wright are set to star opposite each other in Hold Back the Stars, a film that’s being described as “Romeo & Juliet meets Gravity.” TAKEMYMONEY.GIF! (via Vulture)
  • Emily Blunt is always a joy. (Especially with bonus Stanley Tucci cameo.) (via YouTube)

(image: David McNew/Getty Images)

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Vivian Kane (she/her) is the Senior News Editor at The Mary Sue, where she's been writing about politics and entertainment (and all the ways in which the two overlap) since the dark days of late 2016. Born in San Francisco and radicalized in Los Angeles, she now lives in Kansas City, Missouri, where she gets to put her MFA to use covering the local theatre scene. She is the co-owner of The Pitch, Kansas City’s alt news and culture magazine, alongside her husband, Brock Wilbur, with whom she also shares many cats.