Gun seller recalls meeting YouTube shooter in January: ‘I wish we could look into someone’s soul’

A employee at the San Diego, California, store where a woman purchased a semiautomatic handgun used in the tragic shooting at YouTube’s headquarters Tuesday says the January transaction was wholly unremarkable.

According to The Mercury News, Nasim Aghdam, 39, purchased a 9mm Smith & Wesson pistol at The Gun Range on Jan. 2, and picked it up Jan. 16 after a mandatory 10-day waiting period had elapsed.

“It’s not like she stood out,” said the store’s rangemaster and retired officer Manny Mendoza. “I wish we could look into someone’s soul. It’s as tragic as can be.”

The Gun Range ran a “12 Guns of Christmas” sale in October, which included the $400 pistol selected by Aghdam.

As CrimeOnline previously reported, Aghdam allegedly shot and injured three people at YouTube’s San Bruno, California, campus earlier this week before fatally turning the gun on herself. Investigators suspect that Aghdam, who shared her own animal rights activism videos on the platform under the name Nasime Sabz, carried out the attack in response to new company policies that she believed suppressed her viewership and made it harder to earn ad-sharing revenue.

“Youtube filtered my channels to keep them from getting views!” she wrote in one comment. “There is no equal growth opportunity on YOUTUBE or any other video sharing site, your channel will grow if they want [it] to!!!!!”

Aghdam had also expressed her anger toward the service to family members, and after she went missing from her Menifee, California, home, her father Ismail Aghdam contacted Mountain View police twice. He claims to have warned authorities on Monday that his daughter was upset with YouTube’s handling of her content, and could potentially be planning a visit to their offices.

The Associated Press reports that law enforcement did find Nasim Aghdam asleep in her car Tuesday morning about 25 miles from YouTube’s headquarters, though she appeared to be in a calm state of mind when questioned. Mountain View Police Chief Max Bosel said of the interaction, “It was a very normal conversation. There was nothing in her behavior that suggested anything unusual.”

That same day, Aghdam reportedly visited a local gun range before making her way toward YouTube’s campus—where she is believed to have shot three people before killing herself. The victims are all expected to survive.


[Feature image: Associated Press]