Former co-worker says he raised concerns about Orange County workplace shooter in 2014

John Neumann Jr.

Combined ShapeCaption
John Neumann Jr.

Detectives are trying to determine what happened in the days and hours that led up to a workplace shooting in an Orange County industrial park Monday that left five victims and a gunman dead.

Several employees had raised concerns that the shooter, John Neumann Jr., might cause problems after he was fired in April from Fiamma, a manufacturer of RV awnings.

Explore>> Read more trending news

Carlos Rodriguez, a former employee of the company, said there was something about Neumann that didn't sit well with him.

ExploreRead: Victims: What we know about those killed in the Forsyth shooting

"There is no doubt in my mind that I would've been a victim," he said. "I even broke down crying, because there was something about this guy that struck me as 'be careful with this person.'"

Rodriguez said he learned Neumann was capable of workplace violence in 2014, when he said he was the victim of an attack.

"He attacked me physically," he said. "He was trying to strangle me with this backpack."

ExploreWatch: Workplace shooting victim’s relatives say they learned of death during news conference

Rodriguez said he reported the incident to Robert Snyder, his boss at the time, and the Orange County Sheriff's Office. He said he also obtained a restraining order.

"He called me back on Friday," Rodriguez said. "Bob says to me, 'We've made a decision, and we're letting you go.'"

Rodriguez was fired after working for the company for nearly a decade.

ExploreRead: Parents step in to help teens after father killed in Forsyth shooting

His friend and former coworker witnessed Monday's shooting and shared with him details of the rampage.

"John came into the building," Rodriguez said. "He immediately took out his pistol (and) shot Bob in the head right there a couple times."

Rodriguez called Monday's shooting sad and offered his condolences to the victim's families.

"I wish they would've just listened to my concerns," he said. "The other morning, (Bob) had no idea when he woke up (that) this was going to be his last day on this Earth. And unfortunately, it was by the guy he hired."

ExplorePhotos: Victims of the Forsyth shooting