Sergeant Ron Helus of the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office was shot-and-killed as he responded to the Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks, California, late on the night of November 7. Helus was a 29-year veteran of the sheriff’s department. County Sheriff Geoff Dean told the media that Helus was one year away from retirement. The sheriff added, “I told his wife he died a hero — he went in to save lives.” Sheriff Dean had described Helus as a friend. Sergeant Helus is survived by his wife and son.
Sergeant Helus Had Been Planning to Study for a Doctorate
According to his Facebook page, Helus was the owner and founder of a firearms training facility in Ventura. Helus said that he studied at the University of Oklahoma and was from West Hills, California. In his bio section, Helus included two biblical quotes, one, Psalm 144:1, says, “Praise be to the Lord my rock, who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle.” Another, John 15:13, reads, “No greater love can a man have than he who lays down his life for a friend.”
Helus wrote on his LinkedIn page that he was an FBI certified firearms instructor in addition to “thousands of hours of specialized training.” Helus also said that hhad a Master’s degree from the University of Oklahoma in Administrative Leadership and that he planned on studying for a doctorate.
A Witness Said the Borderline Suspect ‘Knew What He Was Doing’
In total, authorities say that 13 people have been killed at the Borderline Bar and Grill, including the gunman and Sergeant Helus. Sergeant Helus was pronounced dead at a local hospital, the sheriff told the media, via CBS Los Angeles. Sheriff’s deputies responded to the bar, which is popular with college students, at around 11:20 p.m. local time after reports of a shooting. Speaking to CBS Los Angeles, the father of a customer at the bar said his daughter said the gunman “knew what he was doing” and had a “purpose.”
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