ST. PAUL, MINNESOTA – In the end, the only thing that mattered to the UCLA shooter Mainak Sarkar – his cat.
It was Jiffy who Sarkar was so concerned about that he left a note, which police later found on his dead body at the crime scene on campus.
“It’s an instructional note to check on his cat,” stated Los Angeles Police Department Chief Charlie Beck at the press conference on Thursday.
Police found Jiffy at Sarkar’s St. Paul apartment, safe and sound and healthy, in apartment eight, where they also found a so-called “kill list.”
Sarkar’s neighbor, Al Thompson, remembers watching Sarkar load up his car just eight days ago, before embarking on his cross-country killing spree.
“Then I saw him loading tote boxes like he was moving and he had his door open and his cat was going back and forth and that’s weird because no one lets their cat run in and out of building,” stated Thompson.
Police now believe Sarkar first murdered his estranged wife, Ashley Hasti. According to the Hennepin County Medical Examiner Office’s report, Hasti died of multiple gunshot wounds. Police found her body Thursday in her Brooklyn Park home. Brooklyn Park Police officers believe he entered her home through a broken window. The police department had never received previous calls involving either Hasti or Sarkar.
Before her murder, Hasti was a medical student at the University of Minnesota. Her grandmother says she spoke fluent Chinese and French and that she also dabbled in stand-up comedy. Hasti met Sarkar when they were both students in California.
Police now believe after killing Hasti, Sarkar drove 2,000 miles to Los Angeles. His targets were two professors at UCLA, one who was Professor Bill Klug, his PhD advisor, who he suspected of stealing his computer code. However, colleagues tell the LA Times Professor Klug bent over backwards to help Sarkar, who was not even a good student.
Sarkar first came to the U.S. from India on a student visa in 2001. He was granted permanent residency two years ago.
He had lived in at his St. Paul apartment for only about three months. Neighbors say he was courteous, but distant.
“There was always a FedEx package outside his door. It was ‘good morning, how are you doing,’ stated Thompson.
Details around Sarkar still remain quite unclear, as seen in his final note, Sarkar only expressed genuine concern for one thing in his life, Jiffy, the cat.
For now, Jiffy the cat is being held at St. Paul Animal Control, but he will later be available for adoption.