COOS BAY, Ore. — A detailed account of the shooting on the Oregon coast this week was released Friday morning, including why the suspect says he did it.
The 35-page document outlines how Zachary Brimhall killed his father and another man before killing himself at Bastendorff Beach.
These documents detail the suspect’s background, a timeline of the shooting spree and two suicide notes that lead us to better understand what was going on in the mind of the shooter, Zachary Brimhall.
In one of the letters Brimhall says, “I reached a point where it was either kill myself or kill a bunch of people first then kill himself. I chose the latter.” It went on to say, “Sorry for all the heartache, but I don’t give a —-“, and then he used an expletive.
The documents say Brimhall first killed his father, then drove to the beach and started firing on cars, motors homes and vans. One of those vehicles was David Hortman’s. It was hit about 18 times by gunfire. One of the bullets struck Hortman in the hip as he was sleeping and he likely died quickly. Hortman was from Michigan. Police say he had just wrapped up a business trip and had plans to vacation on the Oregon coast for the next week.
Then it says Brimhall probably spotted a police vehicle heading his way and shot himself in the head.
Those suicide notes suggest Brimhall wanted to kill as many people as he could. District Attorney Paul Frasier says this situation could have been worse because there is a nearby campground and there was a lot of people in the campground that night. “Directly to the East of where the blue van is, maybe a quarter mile is Coos County Park and it’s kind of a popular park with a campground and during summer months that place is quite busy,” said Frasier. He says if Brimhall had started there, there likely would have been a lot more fatalities and injuries.
See the links below for the full document.