THOUSAND OAKS (CBSLA) — The Ventura County District Attorney’s Office Thursday released new video of the deadly mass shooting at the Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks.
The heartbreaking video shows what Ventura County sheriff’s Sgt. Ron Helus was up against when he entered the popular bar the night of Nov. 7, 2018.
In the video, Helus can be seen shining a light on his gun behind the counter when the shooter comes out of the dark and opens fire. After being shot several times by the suspect, Helus scrambles out of the door.
Another responding officer, aiming for the shooter, strikes Helus instead. Helus ultimately died from that gunshot wound, but not before continuing to fire on the shooter in a final effort to save as many lives as he could.
“He did save mine,” Brian Hynes, the owner of the bar, said. “But he saved so many lives by going in the way he did.”
The D.A.’s office said it would not be filing charges against the California Highway Patrol officer who shot Helus, ruling that the officer used a reasonable amount of force and fired his service weapon in self defense.
Hynes, learning of the decision, cautioned the victims of the shooting and their families about the potential harm that could come from reliving the tragedy.
“I want them to really take a second to think about whether or not they want to see the footage, whether or not they want to read the report, and know whether or not it’s gonna give them any kind of closure,” he said. “I know for me it does.”
Hynes said it was important for him to know the whole truth about what happened that horrifying night that left 12 dead and 23 injured.
“He took the attention off the other people that were still inside the bar and took that himself,” Hynes said of Helus. “It was an amazing thing he did, and I’ll never forget him.”