SAN JOSE, Calif. - The Valley Transportation Agency on Thursday released a batch of personnel files of Sam Cassidy, the disgruntled employee who killed nine coworkers at a San Jose rail yard last month.
The documents show four prior occasions where gunman Cassidy was brought into a manager's office in the last three years for disciplinary action, including a verbal altercation with a colleague.
The incidents documented were all from 2019 and 2020, long before Cassidy went on a bloody rampage early on the morning of May 26. The VTA released 222 pages of documents and emails.
"So far, there is no indication of records in Cassidy’s VTA personnel file of any formal discipline for threatening behavior or violence during his 20-year career at VTA," the transit agency said in a statement.
The most volatile accusation against Cassidy was lodged on Jan. 29, 2020.
The VTA notes show that Cassidy got into a verbal fight with a coworker, which was then reported to VTA Employee Relations and the VTA Office of Civil Rights.
Upon questioning from a supervisor, a coworker reported that another unnamed employee stated of Cassidy: "He scares me. If someone was to go postal, it’d be him."
However, that person refused to name the source of that comment, the VTA noted.
Upon further investigation, there was nothing in Cassidy’s disciplinary history or additional information to explain or support that concern, the VTA wrote, and the matter was referred back to Cassidy’s department manager. VTA officials wrote they are "continuing to research this incident to see if there is any other relevant documentation to review and release."
There were three other findings also released by the VTA, which are:
July 16, 2019: Insubordination. Cassidy was sent home without pay for two days, as a result of refusing to follow company policy in signing out a two-way radio that was necessary to perform his job.
October 21, 2020: Cassidy refused to attend a mandatory CPR recertification class citing his concern about the threat of COVID. A number of reasonable accommodations were provided to the employee with no ultimate resolution.
November 28, 2020. Unexcused leave and improper radio communication. After having trouble clocking in for a work shift, Cassidy inappropriately used a VTA two-way radio for personal communication, rather than for operational matters, which is against VTA policy. He left work without permission instead of resolving the problem.
No motive has officially been revealed for why Cassidy killed his co-workers.
The Wall Street Journal first reported that years before the VTA shooting, Cassidy was detained by federal border agents in 2016 with books about terrorism and a memo book of notes about how he hated his job, according to a Biden administration official who described a Department of Homeland Security memo detailing the encounter.
But Bay Area law enforcement would never have been notified about the incident because Cassidy did not appear to pose any threat to life, according to the FBI Special Agent in Charge of the San Francisco division, Craig Fair.
"If there was a threat to life information, either self-harm or threat to others, the process is set up that it would typically trickle down [to local authorities}," SAC Fair told KTVU in a previous interview. "And again I have not seen the memo. And I don’t know if there was an actual threat to life in that memorandum."
There may be more to unearth about Cassidy.
The VTA said it is still reviewing a large volume of documents, including those related to Cassidy’s disciplinary history and behavior. There are still thousands of pages of documents that include emails, attachments, and other materials that still require review.