MTS Shooter, Victim Identified

Suspect told co-workers 'No one's leaving here'

By R. Stickney and Monica Dean
|  Tuesday, Mar 24, 2009  |  Updated 3:06 PM PDT
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MTS Workplace Shooting

An MTS repairman walked into an East Village bus yard before the end of his shift, telling co-workers "no one's leaving here," then opened fire, killing one coworker and injuring another.

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An MTS repairman opened fire in a downtown bus yard, killing one co-worker and injuring another before being shot and killed by officers.

Just after 2 a.m. Tuesday, Lonnie Glasco, 47, entered the San Diego Metropolitan Transit System bus yard near 100 16th Street and threatened his co-workers with a gun, telling them 'No one's leaving here' according to police.

Police said Glasco then walked outside into the bus yard and shot and critically injured one person. Witnesses reportedly heard the gunfire and tried to run; that's when, police said, the suspect shot and killed a second victim, 37-year old Benjamin Mwangi. MTS officials said both victims are MTS employees. Mwangi was a maintainence foreman, a supervisory position at MTS.

“Officers responded and confronted the suspect. He still had the gun in his hand,” said Capt. Jim Collins with San Diego Police. “They told him to drop the gun. He made a phone call to someone and then raised the gun at the officers. Three officers fired.”

Glasco was killed in the shooting, according to Collins.

As officers requested paramedics for Glasco, MTS employees alerted officers to a second shooting victim in an office near the service bays. That victim, who has not been indentified, is in the hospital on life support, police said.

A friend of the suspect said Glasco had recently been despondent over losing his wife and his home.  Officers are interviewing witnesses who may have more information on the details surrounding the shooting.

The MTS bus yard that occupies the city block was entirely cordoned off as police began their investigation.

Glasco was a 29-year veteran of MTS who worked as a repairman for the system's automated fare boxes. Officials said he came to work at 6 p.m. Monday and was just ending his shift at 2 a.m. Tuesday.

Security is tight at the facility according to MTS spokesperson Rob Schupp. It wasn't too long ago they spent hundreds of thousands of dollars upgrading the security with surveillance cameras he said adding that even the new security system wouldn't have caught an employee bringing a weapon to work.

Riders experienced some delays of between 10 and thirty minutes on up to 50 bus routes that were scheduled to begin service between 4:00 am and 5:00 am Tuesday.

"MTS Bus is cooperating with San Diego Police so that they can complete their investigation. As soon as police clear the area, buses will begin departing immediately from the Imperial Avenue location to provide service on these routes," according to a release issued by a transit spokesperson.

As of 8:20 a.m., bus service had returned back to normal.

For further information on fares, routes, and schedules, visit www.sdmts.com or call (619) 233-3004 or 511.

On its Twitter site, MTS has posted this message: "Thanks for your thoughts. MTS is very concerned about the families of victims & is working to counsel employees."

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