YouTube Shooter Nasim Najafi Aghdam Was Spotted By Police Hours Before Shooting

The 38-year-old shooter's family told cops she might be going to YouTube after she was found asleep in a Mountain View parking lot.

YouTube Shooter Nasim Najafi Aghdam
Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

The 38-year-old shooter's family told cops she might be going to YouTube after she was found asleep in a Mountain View parking lot.

Nasim Najafi Aghdam, the 38-year-old who opened fire at YouTube’s San Bruno headquarters Tuesday, was found by police in a Mountain View parking lot hours before the shootout.

Mountain View police found the woman sleeping in a car with number plates that matched details provided by Aghdam’s family, which claimed the woman was missing since Saturday. The shooter’s father, Ismail Aghdam, told police his daughter was probably going to YouTube. The L.A. Times reports Mountain View police spokeswoman Katie Nelson confirmed cops had indeed found Nasim Aghdam in a parking lot early on Tuesday.

“Our officers made contact with the woman after the license plate of her vehicle matched that of a missing person out of Southern California. The woman confirmed her identity to us and answered subsequent questions. At the conclusion of our discussion, her family was notified that she had been located.”

Aghdam, whose family reportedly hails from Iran, was identified as an athlete and animal rights activist on social media and YouTube. The woman posted workout videos, besides some graphic clips depicting animal abuse, in English and Persian. San Jose Mercury News reports her father told cops his daughter hated YouTube as Aghdam believed she was being discriminated against.

Aghdam reportedly told her family that despite a large following, YouTube had stopped paying her for content. After the shooter’s identity was disclosed, videos from last year surfaced showing Aghdam alleging YouTube “filtered” her. The woman also claimed views and revenues for her videos had drastically dipped after her channels were allegedly targeted.

Aghdam also posted a recording earlier this year in which she claimed one of her workout videos was filtered as it was deemed racy.

At least three people were injured in the shootout at YouTube’s San Bruno headquarters. Aghdam opened fire, with a 9 mm handgun at an outdoor cafe, sending employees to flee the premises. Aghdam was found dead by the police, reportedly by a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

The shooting was earlier attributed to a domestic issue involving a male victim, but the shooter’s hate for YouTube is now being suspected as a possible cause as there appears to be no connection between the victims and the shooter, the police said.

After the shooting, the shooter’s YouTube channels and social media accounts were pulled down. Speaking to reporters from their home in Riverside County, the family said Aghdam would have turned 38 on Wednesday, and they were not aware she owned a gun.