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December 4, 2023

Killer posted Garlic Festival image on Instagram before opening fire

Santino William Legan, the 19-year-old Garlic Festival killer, was one of four brothers in a well-known Gilroy family who grew up in a neighborhood near Christmas Hill Park, scene of the July 28 mass shooting that left three dead and 13 injured. He graduated from Gilroy High School in 2017.

Police and FBI executed search warrants in Gilroy and Walker Lake, Nev., and are poring over computers and social media accounts.

Perhaps the most chilling documents to emerge about Legan were his own Instagram posts, including two posted Sunday afternoon, which have gone viral on the Internet.

Legan’s Instagram page had just three posts—one made several days before the shooting and two posted the afternoon he opened fire at the festival, according to Heavy.com, which posted screenshots of the posts before the page was taken down Sunday evening.

One image, taken from about the spot near where he opened fire, may have been posted at about 5pm Sunday, according to the website.

Next to the image, Legan wrote: “Ayyy garlic festival time. Come get wasted on overpriced shit.”

A second image, oddly of Smokey the Bear, urged readers on July 28 to “Read Might is Right by Ragnar Redbeard,” and added “Why overcrowded towns and pave more open space to make room for hordes of mestizos and Silicon Valley white twats?”

His since-deleted Instagram account said he was Italian and Iranian, according to Heavy.com.

“We understand him to be kind of a loner,” said Craig Fair, deputy special agent in charge of the The FBI told KQED Aug. 6 that it is sending a subpoena to Facebook obtain information from Legan’s Instagram account. Facebook owns Instagram.

FBI’s San Francisco Division told ABC News Aug. 2. “People who act alone are exceptionally dangerous because they may not communicate their plans, intentions, mindset—they may not impart that on other people.”

Legan attended Monte Vista Christian School in Watsonville his freshman through junior years, 2013-2016. The school released the following statement: 

“Monte Vista Christian School extends our deepest condolences to all those impacted by the tragic events in Gilroy last night, especially those whose loved ones were lost or injured. Our thoughts and prayers will remain with the affected communities as they recover and heal in the days to come. Monte Vista Christian School can confirm that the alleged perpetrator attended our school from Fall 2013 until Spring 2016 for his freshman through junior years of high school. At that time, he transferred to Gilroy High School.”

Gilroy school authorities confirmed he graduated in 2017, but declined to give further information.

Legan worked for three months in 2017 at Sushi Omakase in Gilroy.

Authorities say Legan was recently living in Nevada, where he purchased two guns, the AK-47-style semi-automatic rifle he used in the attack and a shotgun that was found in his car near the festival.

The gun shop where Legan purchased the firearms, Big Mike’s Gun and Ammo in Fallon, Nevada, released the following statement Aug. 2: “I did not know this individual. He ordered the rifle off my internet page. When I did see him, he was acting happy and showed no reason for concern. I would never ever sell any firearm to anyone who acted wrong or looks associated with any bad group like white power.”

Legan lived in a triplex in the small community of Walker Lake, a remote northern Nevada community, and had not had any run-ins with the law, according to officials with the Mineral County Sheriff’s Office.

“He appears to have moved into Mineral County this spring and maintained a low profile,” Sheriff Randy Adams said in a statement.

Mineral County prosecutors said a search of the apartment yielded empty shotgun and rifle boxes, a gas mask, empty ammunition boxes, electronic devices, pamphlets on guns and a sack full of ammunition casings. 


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