Santa Maria Shooting, Explosion Leaves 5 Dead

By Faye Higbee

Santa Maria, California – A dispute between two men and a 64 year old resident of the Casa Grande Estates Mobile Estates in Santa Maria left 5 people dead on Friday. The gunman, 64 year old Claude Adams, is believed to have shot two men in the Clubhouse area, then went back to his mobile home and killed his wife and son, then himself.

Adams was reportedly being evicted over the ongoing dispute between him and Kurt Bracke, 70, as well as Richard Hanen, 78. The Mobile Park also has a “pitch and putt” golf course – both Bracke and Hanen were reportedly “avid golfers.” Police are working to determine the motive, but the dispute supposedly has been going on a for a long time.

KTLA reported,

Responding to a report of shots fired at the mobile home park on Friday morning, police found one man fatally shot inside the Casa Grande clubhouse and another dead on the grass nearby, the newspaper reported.

The gunman is believed to have fled to his mobile home, which then went up in flames after a small explosion. The blaze spread to nearby mobile homes before it could be put out by firefighters, where ammunition was exploding from the gunman’s mobile home.

“All throughout the firefighting efforts, ammunition was cooking off,” Police Chief Phil Hansen said.

Police initially found two bodies inside the burned out mobile home, and later found a third, which brought the death toll to 5. They were tentatively identified as Claude, his 65-year-old wife Sherry, and 33-year-old son Seth. Their cause of death has not been officially determined. 

Of course one of the city council members in Santa Maria says she’s working to create policies to “keep the people safe.” She did not elaborate on what those policies would be, but we can guess.

The Santa Maria Times noted,

Chad Biedinger, a coroner’s detective, is requesting any family members of the decedent contact him at 805-681-4145.

Santa Maria Police detectives request anyone with information on this case contact Detective Philip Dix at 805-928-3781, ext. 2424.