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1 Dead in Santa Monica Gang Attack Near SMC

1 Dead in Santa Monica Gang Attack Near SMC
Highway Patrol Images / Flickr

Updated at the bottom with one dead, possibly two arrested. Headline has changed. First posted at 11:55 a.m.

Two people were shot not far from Santa Monica College this morning, shaking up a community already shocked by Friday's unrelated rampage.

The violence in the 1500 block of Michigan Avenue, a neighborhood long known for its gangs and occasional shootings, was reported at ...

... 8:15 a.m., according to Santa Monica police Sgt. Richard Lewis.

The duo were approached on foot and fired on before the suspect fled, possibly in a red Infinity that was being sought by cops, according to Lewis.


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The conditions of the victims were not reported by police. An city email sent to residents this morning read:

There is currently police activity in the area bound by I-10 freeway to Pico Boulevard, 14th Street to 17th Street. Please stay out of the area for the time being.

The Pico neighborhood, as it's known, is home to the Santa Monica 13 Latino gang and the Graveyard Crips African American gang.

[Updated at 12:18 p.m.]: Longtime Pico neighborhood leader Oscar de la Torre was at the scene of the crime today and says one of the victims, a young Santa Monica 13 gang member or affliliate, died at a hospital.

The other victim who was with him, also an SM 13 member or affiliate, was in critical condition at a hospital, he said.

Police at the scene indicated at least 2 suspects had been detained, according to the community leader.

De la Torre, a Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District board member, says he believes the beef involves West L.A.'s Sotel gang, a longtime rival of the Santa Monica set.

He wanted to remind readers that the gang-intervention program he founded, Pico Youth & Family Center, was under threat of being defunded by the city at a time, he argues, when it's needed most in the neighborhood.

A town hall discussion on the matter was scheduled for 6 p.m. June 20 at the center.


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[Added at 1:07 p.m.]: Sgt. Lewis of the SMPD confirmed to the Weekly that one victim has died. He said the other was in surgery at a hospital.

He gave us some information on an earlier, injury shooting in the area, one on Sunday that injured a man on a bicycle.

It happened 12:50 p.m. when someone in a vehicle opened fire on the bicyclist in the 2900 block of Exposition Boulevard, hitting the rider three times with small caliber rounds before the car took off, Lewis said.

A suspect has been identified, and a photo of the shooter would be circulated today in an attempt to find him, the sergeant said.


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Asked to confirm that at least two and as many as four people had been detained in connection with today's attack, Lewis said "that's part of the investigation. I don't know where it stands."

[With reporting from City News Service / @dennisjromero / djromero@laweekly.com / @LAWeeklyNews]


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