California shooting: Police exchange gunfire with suspects

Police track multiple suspects in car chase and shootout

At least 14 people are dead following a mass shooting in California, with another 17 injured when three gunmen entered a social services centre in the city of San Bernardino.

A subsequent police chase saw armed police engaged in a firefight with two suspects, and culminated in television cameras broadcasting the unfolding scene live as police moved in on a seemingly bullet riddled vehicle, which was suspected to be the attackers’ getaway vehicle.

A police spokesperson said: “Officers that were working this active shooter case were doing follow up work when they located what appeared to be the suspects’ vehicle.

“Shots were exchanged, one officer was injured,” she added, saying that the injuries to the officer were not life threatening.

“Some suspects, or a suspect has been hit,” she said.

“I believe there is still possibly a suspect outstanding. It is still a very active, fluid situation. We don’t have any answers yet,” she added.

Police are believed to have spotted the vehicle near San Bernardino airport.

Shots were reportedly fired from the vehicle during a chase and armoured BearCat vehicles surrounded it, with officers believing there was at least one wounded suspect in the back.

A car chase was followed by a shootout, which was broadcast live on American TV as police surrounded the vehicle, moving in slowly in armoured vehicles.

TV cameras then followed police as they did house to house searches.

As news crews followed, with at least one broadcasting the scene live from an overhead helicopter, police moved in on the bullet riddled SUV.

Police confirmed one suspect was "down," while pictures appeared to show another suspect being taken into custody. They could not immediately confirm if the operation was linked to the earlier shooting.

Shortly after 11am local time (7pm Irish time) gunmen entered a social services centre in San Bernardino and opened fire.

Speaking at a press conference at the scene, Police Chief Jared Burguan said that “We do have some preliminary numbers of upwards of 14 people that are dead."

“These were people that came prepared, they were dressed and equipped ... they were armed with long guns, not handguns,” he said.

No arrests have been made and the motive for the attack is unknown.

An FBI spokesman told a news conference: "We do not know if this is a terrorist incident."

Triage units were set up near the scene, with some people seen being wheeled away on gurneys.