Elliot Rodger pounded on the sorority house front door while, inside, the young women he yearned to slaughter were preparing for another Friday night.
The awkward 22-year-old was obsessed with exacting "retribution'' for what he experienced as a lifetime of social and sexual isolation, and had planned meticulously to target as many people as possible. But here again, he was denied access to those he felt should worship him.
So when no one answered after several minutes, Rodger improvised.
Walking around the corner, he found a group of students and opened fire, then took off in his black BMW through the streets of a college beach town buzzing with end-of-school-year energy. Within 10 minutes, the rampage was over and Rodger was dead, apparently after shooting himself.
As authorities reconstructed the events, they would conclude that Elliot Rodger had stabbed three victims in his apartment, shot and killed three others at random, and injured 13 more either with gunshots or a car that he used as a battering ram against bicyclists and skateboarders.
The mayhem unfolded within just one square mile (2.6 square kilometers) near the University of California, Santa Barbara campus, but included 12 crime scenes.
The killings began with the stabbings in the apartment that Rodger rented, inside a two-story courtyard building fronted by palm trees. Authorities have released few details, other than that all the victims were male and killed Friday.
Rodger then drove five blocks to the Alpha Phi sorority house.
In rambling writings he titled "My Twisted World,'' Rodger detailed his plan to kill his roommates and then invade the sorority, which he concluded symbolized the world that tortured him - beautiful women who would have spurned him in favor of the "obnoxious slobs'' whom he also despised.
"I will sneak into their house at around 9:00 p.m. on the Day of Retribution, just before all the partying starts, and slaughter every single one of them,'' Rodger wrote. He knew the stucco house, with its neatly trimmed lawn and hedges, well: "I've sat outside it in my car to stalk them many times.''
The double front door is heavy wood, with glass etchings of the sorority's shield and an electronic keypad to get in. Several women heard Rodger's "aggressive knocking,'' Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown said. "Fortunately, no one opened.''
Moments later came the first emergency call.
It was 9:27 p.m., and Rodger had left the door and