Elliot Rodger videos: Police admit being warned about killer's YouTube channel but not watching it

Rodger's parents say they are living in 'a hell on earth' in an emotional statement as it emerged police chose not to watch his YouTube videos

Sheriff's deputies and police were warned about the sinister videos posted online by British-born gunman Elliot Rodger but chose not to watch them, authorities have disclosed.

In a statement, the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office said it was contacted by a mental health hotline and a therapist over their concerns about the disturbing videos.

Four deputies and a police officer were dispatched to the 22-year-old’s apartment, where Rodger’s was questioned for ten minutes.

During the interview, Rodger explained he was struggling to fit in socially in Isla Vista and told police the videos were a way for him to express himself.

They then briefed Rodger's mother by phone and instructed him to speak with his parents as well. Police found him to be shy, timid and polite.

This new sequence of events contradicts a statement on Sunday from spokeswoman Kelly Hoover, who said "the sheriff's office was not aware of any videos until after the shooting rampage occurred."

"Sheriff's deputies concluded that Rodger was not an immediate threat to himself or others, and that they did not have cause to place him on an involuntary mental health hold, or to enter or search his residence," the sheriff's office has since said.

"Therefore, they did not view the videos or conduct a weapons check on Rodger."

Rodger then reposted some of the videos before his killing spree, where he stabbed and shot six people and injured thirteen before turning the gun on himself.

He also published manifestos and other videos online, where he vowed to "slay" as many sorority girls as he could and claimed women had rejected him socially and sexually.

Read more: Joe the Plumber : 'your dead kids don’t trump my Constitutional rights'

Rodger’s parents Peter Rodger and Li Chin released an emotional statement on Thursday and described living in a “hell on earth” following their son’s murderous rampage.

In a statement read out by their family friend Simon Astaire on NBC Today, they said: “We are crying in pain for the victims and their families. It breaks out hearts on a level that we didn’t think possible. The feeling of knowing that it was our son’s actions that caused the tragedy can only be described as hell on earth.

"It is now our responsibility to do everything we can to help avoid this happening to any other family. Not only to avoid more innocence destroyed, but also to identify and deal with the mental issues that drove our son to do what he did.”

Mr Rodger and Ms Chin had rushed to the scene to stop their son after he emailed a 141-page manifesto detailing his plans to some 30 people including his mother, father and former teachers.

But it was too late – Ms Rodger heard radio reports about the shootings as she drove and police in Santa Barbara told the pair their son was believed to be the gunman.

The family have still not found the strength to read their son's manifesto, Mr Astaire said.

READ MORERENEWED CALLS FOR STRICTER GUN CONTROL 
RODGER'S PARENTS WARNED POLICE 
TRAGIC ECHOES OF DAVID ATTIAS KILLINGS
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Web Developer - Junior / Mid Weight

£15000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: To support their continued grow...

Recruitment Genius: Marketing Data Specialist

£22000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They are the go-to company for ...

Recruitment Genius: Search Marketing Specialist - PPC / SEO

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join the UK's leadin...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Administrator

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This caravan dealership are currently recruiti...

Day In a Page

Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate
Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'
10 best statement lightbulbs

10 best statement lightbulbs

Dare to bare with some out-of-the-ordinary illumination
Wimbledon 2015: Heather Watson - 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Heather Watson: 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Briton pumped up for dream meeting with world No 1
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve
Dustin Brown: Who is the tennis player who knocked Rafael Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?

Dustin Brown

Who is the German player that knocked Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?
Ashes 2015: Damien Martyn - 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Damien Martyn: 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Australian veteran of that Ashes series, believes the hosts' may become unstoppable if they win the first Test