Rodger, now a wealthy college student, attacks two couples in separate incidents, apparently driven to fury by the sight of the young men and women being romantic. Rodger later writes of the encounters. During the first, he follows the couple to their car after seeing them “kissing passionately” at a local Starbucks, and throws his coffee on them. He runs away “in fear” when the male yells at him. He later writes:
I had never struck back at my enemies before, and I felt a small sense of spiteful gratification for doing so.
He realizes, he later writes, that he is “capable of killing them:”
I wanted to kill them slowly, to strip the skins off their flesh. They deserve it. The males deserve it for taking the females away from me, and the females deserve it for choosing those males instead of me.
Later in the month, he sees another kissing couple at a food court. The sight, he will write, make him “feel so inferior and worthless and small” that he followed them to their car and threw his iced tea on them. He later writes:
The hatred boiled inside me with burning vitriol.
Rodger attacks two “hot blonde girls” by throwing a hot coffee on them at a bus stop in Isla Vista, after offending him by failing to smile at him when he smiles at them. He later writes:
How dare those girls snub me in such a fashion! How dare they insult me so! I raged to myself repeatedly. They deserved the punishment I gave them. It was such a pity that my latte wasn’t hot enough to burn them. Those girls deserved to be dumped in boiling water for the crime of not giving me the attention and adoration I so rightfully deserve!
Rodger drops out of all of his classes at Santa Barbara City College because, he will write, of “all of those beautiful girls I could never have.” He will write that his decision to leave college just solidifies his feelings…
…that the Day of Retribution was now very possible
Rodger decides that he must become extraordinarily wealthy in order to attract female companionship. His plan is to win the Mega Millions lottery. Winning the lottery, he writes, is the only way to avoid his planned “Day of Retribution”:
If I could somehow become a multimillionaire at a young age, then my lifestyle would instantly become better than most people my age. I would be able to get revenge on my enemies just by living above them and lording over them. That was a form of happy, peaceful revenge, and it became my only hope.
Rodger believes that “the power of the law of attraction,” which he has learned from a book called The Secret, will help him win the jackpot.
Rodger attacks “a group of popular college kids” playing kickball in an Isla Vista park. His weapon: a “super soaker” filled with orange juice. He later writes:
Rage boiled inside me as I watched those people who thought they were better than me enjoying their pleasurable little lives together. The rage was so intense that I couldn’t take it.
After attacking them, he will write, he is “giddy with ecstatic, hate-fueled excitement.”
I wished I could spray boiling oil at the foul beasts. They deserved to die horrible, painful deaths just for the crime of enjoying a better life than me.
Rodger begins practicing with handguns at an Oxnard, California shooting range. His plans to become extraordinarily wealthy and thus attract women by winning the lottery have not borne fruit, and his failure to win the lottery has driven him into a screaming rage. He is planning for what he calls his “Day of Retribution,” where he intends to shoot as many women as possible for the “crime” of refusing to have sex with him. He later writes:
I had the knowledge, in the back of my mind, that the Day of Retribution was very possible now. Going to the shooting range … gave me the perfect opportunity to gain some initial training in shooting guns, which will be the main weapons I use as vengeance against my enemies when the Day of Retribution ultimately comes to pass. … As I fired my first few rounds, I felt so sick to the stomach. I questioned my whole life, and I looked at the gun in front of me and asked myself ‘What am I doing here? How could things have led to this?’ I couldn’t believe my life was actually turning out this way. There I was, practicing shooting with real guns because I had a plan to carry out a massacre.
Rodger buys his first handgun, a Glock 34 semiautomatic, which he calls “an efficient and highly accurate weapon.” He will write:
After I picked up the handgun, I brought it back to my room and felt a new sense of power. I was now armed.
He will buy two more guns in the following year, after he “began to seriously think about planning the Day of Retribution,” and will explain:
I needed to buy a third handgun, just in case one of them jams. I needed two working handguns at the same time, as that was how I planned to commit suicide; with two simultaneous shots to the head. I also needed to buy magazine clips and ammunition, as well as knives and carrying cases for my equipment.
Rodger joins the Web forum PUAHate.com. He later describes it as “a forum full of men who are starved of sex, just like me.” He attempts to convince his parents to peruse the site::
to give them some sort dose of reality as to why I am so miserable. They never understood why I am so miserable. They have always had the delusion that everything is going well for me, especially my father.
PUAHate is a forum comprised mostly of “men’s rights activists” who have become disenchanted with the slick marketing and sales gimmicks of the PUA, or Pick-up Artists, contingent on the Internet. Some of his comments on the forum express racism, including one where he mocks an Asian man trying to date a white woman, and another where he says it is “rage-inducing” to see a “black guy chilling with 4 hot white girls.” In another message, Rodger, whose mother is Asian, later writes to an Asian member of the site:
Full Asian men are disgustingly ugly and white girls would never go for you. You’re just butthurt that you were born as an asian piece of shit … You even admit that you wish you were half white. You’ll never be half-white and you’ll never fulfill your dream of marrying a white woman. I suggest you jump off a bridge.
Rodger chooses Isla Vista, California as the site of his planned massacre, tentatively scheduling it for a weekend night in November 2013. He later writes:
What better place is there to exact my Retribution on my enemies? Every time I walked around Isla Vista, trying to meet girls or fit in with popular kids, I’ve only been treated with disdain, as if I’m an inferior mouse. On the Day of Retribution, the tables will indeed turn, I mused to myself.
In what he will later call a “last ditch effort of desperation,” Rodger makes a final push towards convincing a woman to have sex with him. In a manifesto he later writes, he says that if he fails to do so, he will schedule a long-planned shooting spree to kill as many women as he can in revenge for his failure. He will write:
I spent a lot of time exercising in my room in a final effort to appear as attractive as possible to girls. I proposed that after two weeks of rigorous exercising, I will try my hardest to go out in Isla Vista and do everything I can to meet a girl and lose my virginity. … Before [I] would set the definite decision to plan the Day of Retribution, I wanted to give women and humanity one more chance to accept me and give me a chance to have a pleasurable youth. I resolved that if I go out to Isla Vista for this final time, and I still end up going back to my room as a lonely virgin, I will have no choice but to plan my Retribution.
The plans do not bear fruit: he goes to a party, tries to push a group of women off of a ten-foot ledge after, he will write, a “dark, hate-fueled rage overcame my entire being,” and instead falls himself (or is pushed) from the ledge and breaks his leg. He will write:
A whole group of the obnoxious brutes came up and dragged me onto their driveway, pushing and hitting me. I wanted to fight and kill them all. I managed to throw one punch toward the main attacker, but that only caused them to beat me even more. I fell to the ground where they started kicking me and punching me in the face.
Losing his virginity, he will write, “was the only thing that could have saved me. I was giving the female gender one last chance to provide me with the pleasures I deserved from them.”
Because of his broken leg, Rodger delays his planned killing spree. He will write:
I made a new plan to set the ultimate and final date for the Day of Retribution to be at the end of the Spring of 2014. … The plan was to destroy the entirety of Isla Vista, and kill every single person in it, or at least kill as many popular young people I could before the police arrive and I’d have to kill myself.
Rap Genius co-founder Moghadam resigns after posting a series of annotations on the site’s copy of Roger’s 41-page manifesto. Moghadam comments include “beautifully written” and comments about Rodger’s sister:
Elliot barely mentions his sister Georgia throughout the book! Towards the end, however, he tells us that they did not get along and becomes extremely angry when he hears her having sex with her boyfriend MY GUESS: his sister is smokin hot
He tells Valleywag:
I was fascinated by the fact that a text was associated with such a heartbreaking crime, especially since Elliot is talking about my neighborhood growing up. I got carried away with making the annotations and making any comment about his sister was in horrible taste, thankfully the rap genius community edits out my poor judgement, I am very sorry for writing it
And apologizes on Twitter
I want to apologize to everyone. I need to hear these criticisms, reflect for real, and work on becoming a better person.
Rap Genius CEO Lehman issues a statement:
However, Mahbod Moghadam, one of my co-founders, annotated the piece with annotations that not only didn’t attempt to enhance anyone’s understanding of the text, but went beyond that into gleeful insensitivity and misogyny. All of which is contrary to everything we’re trying to accomplish at Rap Genius.
Rogers calls 911 call and makes a police report to report that his roommate, Cheng Yuan Houng, stole his candles from his bedroom. The police arrest the roommate and charge him with theft for a value of $22.
Rodger’s father and the father of victim, Christopher Martinez, meet. Details of their meeting and location is kept private. The fathers plan to team up and continue the fight for gun control:
We are crying out in pain for the victims and their families. It breaks our hearts on a level that we didn’t think was possible. It is now our responsibility to do everything we can to help avoid this happening to any other family.