UCLA Shooter's Slain Wife Was a Med Student

Cops believe Mainak Sarkar killed her before driving to LA
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 3, 2016 4:13 AM CDT
Updated Jun 3, 2016 6:47 AM CDT
UCLA Shooter's Slain Wife Was a Med Student
Students and members of the community raise up lights during a candlelight vigil for professor William Klug at UCLA.   (AP Photo/Kelvin Kuo)

The woman on the "kill list" of UCLA gunman Mainak Sarkar was his estranged wife, who was apparently shot to death in her Minnesota home before Sarkar traveled to California, authorities say. Jean Johnson, grandmother of 31-year-old University of Minnesota medical student Ashley Hasti, tells the Star Tribune that the couple married in 2011 and split up around a year later, but they didn't get a divorce because Hasti couldn't afford one. Her body was found in her St. Paul home after cops at UCLA found a note from Sarkar asking them to "check on my cat" and giving his Minnesota address. Police found her name on a list in Sarkar's apartment and realized she could be in danger. Johnson says her granddaughter was a "kind, beautiful, giggly girl" and she doesn't know if there was any tension between her and Sarkar.

LAPD Chief Charlie Beck says that Sarkar drove from Minnesota to Los Angeles and was probably in town for a "couple of days" before killing UCLA professor William Klug and shooting himself in Klug's office, the Los Angeles Times reports. The chief says Sarkar's car hasn't been found yet and it's not known whether he committed other crimes between Minnesota and California. Beck says investigators believe Sarkar, who made online postings accusing former mentor Klug of stealing his work, had planned to kill another UCLA professor but couldn't find him. That professor "is fine" and was aware Sarkar had issues with him, Beck says. On Thursday night, hundreds of students and faculty members gathered at UCLA to mourn Klug, known as a kind and dedicated professor who did his best to help students, including Sarkar, the AP reports. "Bill was so much more than my soul mate," his wife, Mary Elise Klug, said in a statement. "I will miss him every day for the rest of my life." (Read more UCLA stories.)

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