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Officials offer grief counseling for neighbors in Covina shooting

December 29, 2008 |  9:39 am

Covina Mayor Kevin Stapleton said the city wants to offer grief counseling and other services for residents in the neighborhood where a man killed nine people on Christmas Eve.

The city will hold a meeting tonight at 7, giving residents an opportunity to ask questions to police and city leaders.

Bruce Jeffrey Pardo, the ex-husband of one of the victims, arrived at an annual family party dressed as Santa Claus and armed with four semiautomatic weapons and an incendiary device. Pardo left after shooting family members and setting the house on fire.

"This man wanted to create hell on earth for this family and he did it," Stapleton said.

The mayor said he cannot recall having nine murders in the city, yet alone at once. He said that Pardo had been planning for months, based on his efforts in September to get the Santa suit. He said it took Pardo some time to acquire the guns and equipment.

-- Richard Winton