Police say California shooters participated in target practice

pakistan school islam shooting san bernardino
A security guard sits at the main entrance to the Al-Huda International Seminary, where Tashfeen Malik, California's female shooter attended, according to Pakistani intelligence officials, in Multan, Pakistan, Monday, Dec. 7, 2015. The officials identified the school as a women-only madrassa with a chain across Pakistan and branches in the U.S. and Canada. Al-Huda's founder, Farhat Hashmi, now living in Canada, has been criticized for promoting a conservative strain of Islam. (AP Photo/Asim Tanveer)

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. (AP) – The latest on the shootings in San Bernardino, California (all times local):

12:20 p.m.

The FBI says the California shooters have participated in target practice, including once within days of the attack that killed 14 people.

David Bowdich, assistant director of the FBI’s Los Angeles office, said at a news conference Monday that Syed Farook and his wife, Tashfeen Malik, participated in target practice at ranges within the Los Angeles area.

He says both were radicalized and had been “for some time.” He says the bureau doesn’t know when or whether anyone else radicalized them.

The FBI has said it’s investigating the shooting at a holiday gathering of Farook’s co-workers as an act of terrorism.

Bowdich says they found 19 pipes in the couple’s home in Redlands, California, that could be turned into bombs with all the right components.

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10:15 a.m.

The founder of an Islamic religious school organization whose former student helped carry out the California mass shooting says the group is non-political and has no links to extremists.

Farhat Hashmi said in a statement on her website that Tashfeen Malik attended Al-Huda International Seminary’s branch in the Pakistani city of Multan briefly between 2013 and 2014.

The school is a women-only madrassa with locations across Pakistan and in the U.S. and Canada. Hashmi says Malik left without completing a diploma.

Hashmi says “it seems” Malik “was unable to understand the beautiful message” of the Quran.

Hashmi says the Al-Huda International Welfare Foundation denounces extremism, violence and acts of terrorism and cannot be held responsible “for personal acts of any of our students.”

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9:20 a.m.

Attorney General Loretta Lynch says the Justice Department is monitoring the wave of anti-Muslim rhetoric emerging in the wake of last week’s mass shooting in San Bernardino.

Responding to reports by The Associated Press and other media outlets that Tashfeen Malik praised the Islamic State group on Facebook around the time she and her husband opened fire, Lynch said Monday investigators do not yet want to define which particular ideology may have inspired them.

Muslim advocacy groups have expressed concern about a rising tide of Islamophobia following the shootings, including incidents of vandalism and threats at mosques.

Lynch emphasized that federal law enforcement prosecutes deeds, not words. Lynch urged Americans not to let violent rhetoric rooted in the fear prompted by the attack turn into violent acts.

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8:30 a.m.

San Bernardino County leaders are vowing increased security at county facilities Monday as thousands of employees return to work after a restaurant inspector and his wife opened fire on a gathering of his co-workers, killing 14 people and wounding 21.

During a press conference Monday, leaders said there will be more security guards at the facilities and they will now be armed. The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department will also increase patrols at county buildings.

Also speaking at Monday’s news conference was County Public Health Director Trudy Raymundo and Department of Environmental Health Services Division Chief Corwin Porter, who were among those who attended the holiday party that was attacked. Raymundo said San Bernardino County will heal and rebuild and will come through stronger on the other side.

(Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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