Barona Complex Shooting Victim IDd

Investigators say suspect was former employee

By Eric S. Page, Gene Cubbison and Tony Shin
|  Wednesday, Dec 30, 2009  |  Updated 6:52 AM PDT
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Raw Video: Barona Complex Shooting

NBCSanDiego.com

Investigators say suspect was former employee

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Barona Shooting Was Murder-Suicide: Sheriff

UPDATED: San Diego County Sheriff Bill Gore released details at an afternoon news conference.

Raw Video: Barona Complex Shooting

A gunman opened fire Tuesday at the Barona gaming complex.
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The victim in a murder-suicide shooting at the tribal gaming office at Barona Casino has been identified, according to the Medical Examiner’s office.

Raymundo Castillas, 43, was shot at around 10 a.m. at the gaming complex north of Lakeside, deputies said.  Witnesses told investigators they heard three shots fired. A sheriff's department spokesman said a SWAT team was then sent out to the complex.

San Diego County Sheriff Bill Gore said a robot was sent in Tuesday afternoon and determined that two male victims were found dead inside the office. He said one of them was a 38-year-old El Cajon man named Donnell Roberts, a former gaming office employee who officials said was spotted earlier in the day entering the office armed with a gun.

According to law enforcement sources, Roberts was angry that he had been passed up for another job at a different casino. He blamed it on his former boss because he allegedly gave Roberts a bad performance review. 

Investigators searched Roberts' El Cajon apartment on Tuesday night. Sources said they found shotgun shells and a suicide note inside the apartment.

Court documents obtained by NBC San Diego also show that Roberts filed for bankruptcy in 2003 and owed nearly $100,000, including child support payments. His ex-wife Maria Small said Roberts had seven children in all. She also said Roberts always seemed to have a "deep sadness within himself."

Sheriff's department spokeswoman Jan Caldwell said during the morning that Roberts went into an office at the gaming commission office armed with a rifle. Caldwell said Roberts ordered three secretaries out of the office. The secretaries reported they heard three shots after they left.

Negotiators from the FBI and the sheriff's department tried to initiate contact with Roberts throughout the day prior to detonating a flash-bang grenade and sending in the robot.

Nearby offices were evacuated, but the casino was not. Casino general manager Rick Salinas said the incident did not involve the actual casino and that everyone there is safe.

Caldwell said Roberts had been employed at the gaming commission until he was fired in November and had been employed as a security guard at the casino prior to his stint on the gaming commission. She did not have other details on why his employment was ended.

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