5 killed in California shooting rampage, including gunman's wife

Five people were killed and several more wounded in the rural area.

— -- The death toll in a shooting rampage in northern California rose to five today as authorities gave chilling new insight into the suspected killer's apparently random attack.

Authorities say the gunman's wife -- whose killing appeared to have kicked off the shooting spree -- was found dead under the floor at their home Tuesday night. Authorities say they suspect she was killed Monday night, sparking suspected gunman Kevin Neal's seemingly random Tuesday morning shooting spree at multiple locations, including an elementary school.

No children were killed in the shootings, which took place about 130 miles north of Sacramento. But seven children were among those wounded, authorities said, with injuries ranging from very minor to life-threatening.

Authorities said law enforcement had a history with Neal and said he was out on bail for an assault with a deadly weapon arrest from January.

Here's what we know about how the rampage unfolded, according to authorities:

-- Neal's wife was found dead from several gunshot wounds on Tuesday night, said Phil Johnston, Tehama County assistant sheriff, but Johnston said she was probably shot late Monday. Her body was found covered up under the floor, he said. Johnston said it appears that's what started the shooting spree.

-- The first call for the Tuesday shootings came in at 7:54 a.m. PT. Authorities said random shots were fired into residences.

-- The suspect then engaged a citizen who followed him before allegedly stealing the citizen's car, police said.

--The gunman "arbitrarily" shot at residents in the rural area as he drove by, said Johnston.

-- Shortly after, the gunman engaged with a woman who was taking her two children to school. He allegedly opened fire on them at an intersection, authorities said. The mother suffered life-threatening injuries from the shooting, and one of her children sustained non-life-threatening injuries, police said.

-- The gunman then turned his sights to the Rancho Tehama Elementary School. Before classes began, the gunman, armed with a semi-automatic rifle, crashed a vehicle through the school’s locked gate and fired dozens of shots at the school, damaging windows and walls, according to the school district and police.

-- One student was shot. Authorities said today that the student is in critical condition.

-- The gunman spent about six minutes there, Johnston said. Authorities said it appeared the gunman became frustrated when he could not gain entry to the classrooms, so he got back into the vehicle and left.

-- The gunman allegedly went back on the road and shot and killed one person, Johnston said.

-- After that, the suspect allegedly crashed the stolen car, robbed someone and took a second vehicle, authorities said.

-- At 8:19 a.m., the rampage ended, when the armed suspect engaged two officers and they returned fire, killing the suspect at the scene, according to police.

Authorities said they believe the gunman was on a random rampage, looking to kill people.

Authorities today praised the elementary school for its lockdown procedures, saying they could have faced a horrific bloodbath had they not taken safety measures.