The man who shot dead a fellow attorney and wounded another before turning the gun on himself Friday at a Southern California holiday party has been identified.
A coroner named 58-year-old family man John Mendoza responsible in the murder-suicide at Bixby Knolls Law office in Long Beach around 2:25pm, according to the Press Telegram.
Mendoza killed 75-year-old Major A Langer during the office Christmas party where employees gathered together to celebrate and win prizes.
It had been revealed that Langer attempted to fire Mendoza right before the deadly events went down.
He also injured Ronald Beck, who runs day-to-day operations at the firm.
Beck is currently in serious but stable condition and was rushed to the hospital by his son after the shooting.
Long Beach police responded to Bixby Knolls amid reports of an active shooter, but realized after it was actually a ‘workplace violence incident’.
John Mendoza (pictured) an expert in workplace legal issues, has been named as the disgruntled law firm partner who shot and killed another partner in Long Beach, California
Mendoza is seen on Facebook smiling with his son, Matt Mendoza, back in June, just months before the Friday tragedy
A buff Mendoza is pictured in August with his dog on social media. He opened fire at the law firm holiday party after he reportedly got fired
Mendoza shot dead Major A Langer, 75, (shown left) at Bixby Knolls Law office in Long Beach around 2.25pm. He also injured Ronald Beck, (right) who runs day-to-day operations at the firm
Long Beach police responded to the Bixby Knolls neighborhood of Long Beach, amid reports of an active shooter around 2.25pm. They have now clarified it was actually a ‘workplace violence incident’
There were three men involved, two of whom were killed, including Mendoza, according to police. Pictured is the building, believed to house law offices, with windows covered in Christmas displays featuring candy canes and Santa Clause
Long Beach City Councilman Al Austin told the LA Times that the Mendoza was a former employee and that he shot and killed one person before turning the gun on himself. Austin represents the Bixby Knolls area and was briefed by police.
Mendoza is pictured on Facebook smiling with his family and dog in the months prior to the deadly events.
His biography said he studied political science at the University of California, Los Angeles and studied law at Pepperdine University.
The late Langer’s friend described the lawyer as ‘the most caring, sincere man I probably ever met’.
Jim Hall said: ‘He just had a heart of gold and really cared for everybody who works at the firm and considers them members of his family … He certainly didn’t deserve this.’
Langer has practiced law for 51 years and represented notable people such as Pamela Anderson, according to the Orange County Register.
‘Langer was well-known in legal circles, having tried 75 civil and criminal cases to verdict,’ the firm’s website said.
‘He handled Weber vs. the city of Rolling Hills, a 14-month trial that is believed to be the longest trial in the history of California, represented actress Pamela Anderson in a breach of contract lawsuit and won numerous six- to seven-figure verdicts.’
A murder investigation is currently underway at the scene and a handgun was found in the office, according to the Long Beach Post. No officers were involved in the shooting.
Sgt Brad Johnson said the shooter died from a self-inflicted gun would, and didn’t engage with any officers. It’s not clear if he was dead before they got to the scene.
Video showed people running from an unmarked building shouting about a shooting inside.
A woman is escorted away from the Bixby Knolls law office after Friday afternoon’s shooting
Video of the incident show lines of police cars blocking the street and workers at neighboring office buildings coming out to watch the scene unfold
A murder investigation is currently underway at the scene and a handgun was found in the office, according to the Long Beach Post
No officers were involved in the shooting, and it’s not clear if the gunman shot himself before or after they entered the building
The two-story building, with windows decorated with Christmas displays featuring candy canes and Santa Claus, is home to several law offices.
Dozens of police officers, including members of a SWAT team, surrounded the building and blocked off surrounding streets. Multiple ambulances arrived to the scene.
Police later confirmed that it wasn’t an active shooter situation, despite initial reports, but instead a ‘workplace violence incident.’
‘They did so with the understanding that the suspect was alive and lying in wait to shoot them inside,’ a source told the Press Telegram about why the incident was first marked an active shooter.
Officers searched the firm room to room to be sure everyone was accounted for and there were no other gunmen, police said.
Sgt Brad Johnson said the shooter died from a self-inflicted gun would, and didn’t engage with any officers. It’s not clear if he was dead before they got to the scene. A video shows police cars lining the street outside the office building
Long Beach City Councilman Al Austin told the Times that the shooter was a former employee and that he shot and killed one person before turning the gun on himself. Austin represents the Bixby Knolls area and was briefed by police
Dozens of police officers, including members of a SWAT team, surrounded the building and blocked off surrounding streets. Multiple ambulances arrived to the scene
Police said there is no longer an active shooter in the building. None of the victims or anyone involved have been named yet
Joy Wilson told the Times she heard police sirens near her home and walked outside to see nearly two dozen people running ‘like they were trying to get away.’
‘They were definitely panicking,’ she said. ‘Something bad was happening, they were moving.’
Agnes, a 40-year-old who lives in the area said neighbors are shocked by the violence, describing it as a ‘very safe area.’
‘Everything was always fine,’ she said. ‘We have good neighbors. That is why I am in shock.’
Long Beach is about 20 miles south of downtown Los Angeles on the southern tip of LA county and has about 460,000 people.
For confidential support call the National Suicide Prevention Line on 1-800-273-8255