A house in Orinda that a woman said she was renting for a family reunion became the site of a shooting Thursday night that left four people dead and at least four wounded.
The shooting happened around 10:45 p.m. Thursday at a home on Lucille Way near Knickerbocker Lane in Orinda, during a house party that drew at least 100 guests. As the East Bay Times reports, the party had been advertised on Instagram as an "Airbnb Mansion Party" on Halloween with the messages to "BYOB" and "BYOW" and "DM for location." Instagram user "tonecapone300" was ostensibly the host of the party, which was set to start at 10 p.m.
As KRON 4 reports, the owner of the home, Michael Wang, called the woman he rented it to after receiving complaints from neighbors and seeing a concerning number of people entering the house. Via his Ring doorbell camera, Wang says he saw well more than the 12 people the woman said would be attending the "family reunion," and tried reaching out to the woman by phone. Wang also said he had called the police, who were on their way to the scene when the shooting occurred.
The property has since been removed from Airbnb's website, but the UK Daily Mail grabbed a few photos of the modest "mansion" before it was removed.
Neighbor Chris Gade spoke to KRON 4 saying he was one of those who complained after hearing the noise and beginning to see the potential size of the party. He said he saw multiple people fleeing "down the hill" after the shooting occurred.
The party was happening in an affluent area of the East Bay, east of the Caldecott tunnel. As Gade tells the Chronicle, "Our whole neighborhood heard it and then people were screaming and fleeing. We could see from our windows. There were a lot of people walking around who were hurt."
Three people were pronounced dead at the scene, and four people were reportedly taken to Walnut Creek Medical Center. On of those people died at the hospital, one is in critical condition, one is in serious condition, and one has already been released, per the Chronicle.
Hayden Aitchison, a senior at Miramonte High School in Orinda, tells the Chronicle that most of the attendees at the party were college-aged, and that she new a few people who attended after seeing it promoted on Instagram.
Airbnb issued a statement saying, "We are horrified by this tragedy and are in close communication with Chief David Cook of Orinda Police to offer our support with his investigation into who committed this senseless violence. Additionally, we have taken action to ban the booking guest from our platform. Our thoughts are with the loved ones of the victims of this abhorrent act as well as the neighbors of the home."
Gade, who is a psychology lecturer at UC Berkeley, spoke with multiple reporters following the shooting. As he told ABC 7, "You can't really control what people do with their houses especially with home values being what they are right now and it is sometimes tough to cover mortgages. It's a challenging situation and most often it has not been an issue. With this house there have been some wonderful people who have rented it out and aren't a problem at all."