An elderly man who apparently was despondent about his health killed himself Wednesday in a courtyard at a local retirement community, according to the Santa Barbara Police Department.
Officers were called about 10:20 a.m. to Vista del Monte on Modoc Road, where they found the body of the victim, an 88-year-old resident, Sgt. Riley Harwood said.
The victim, whose name was not released, shot himself in the head with a .38-caliber revolver, according to Harwood.
A woman — the daughter of another Vista del Monte resident — was in the courtyard at the time, Harwood said, adding that she heard the gunshot but did not see the actual shooting.
He said the victim left suicide notes in the courtyard and inside his residence.
“This was obviously something that had been planned,” Harwood said. “It was not spontaneous.”
Harwood said the man had been suffering from health issues and indicated that his quality of life was gone.
The Santa Barbara County Coroner’s Office took custody of the body and was notifying the victim’s family, Harwood said.