On Monday LAPD released video of a police shooting that left two dead, including a 14-year-old girl, inside a North Hollywood Burlington store.
The full 35-minute video can be viewed below:
Los Angeles police responded to a call for an alleged assault with a deadly weapon and possible “shooting in progress” around 11:45 a.m. on December 23.
LAPD officers began their search for a suspect inside the Burlington, shooting and killing a man on the second floor of the building. LAPD officials said the man was in the process of assaulting another person in the store before the officer shot his weapon. The police later learned the suspect was 24-year-old Daniell Elena-Lopez.
“This chaotic incident resulting in the death of an innocent child is tragic and devastating for everyone involved,” LAPD Chief Michel Moore said. “ I am profoundly sorry for the loss of this young girl’s life and I know there are no words that can relieve the unimaginable pain for the family. My commitment is to conduct a thorough, complete and transparent investigation into the circumstances that led up to this tragedy and provide the family and public with as much information as possible.”
Chief Moore ordered the department to expedite the process of making the officer’s body-cam footage available to the public, as it typically takes 45 days.
The footage shows body-cam and surveillance views of the incident, as well as the calls that were received by LAPD.
In one of the calls, the woman described the man as being Hispanic with a white hat and colorful jacket. She can be heard yelling in the direction of customers to evacuate the building, while also describing that the suspect was using a bike lock as a weapon.
In a separate call, a woman said the suspect had a gun and was firing it.
The surveillance footage from the Burlington store showed the man enter with his bicycle and make his way to the second floor with it in hand. After being approached by an employee about the bicycle, he used it to smash a computer. The suspect then began to approach multiple women on both floors of the sore, allegedly trying to take their belongings and starting physical altercations.
Later in the video, Elena-Lopez was seen with what appeared to be a bike lock, which he appeared to be swinging toward women in the store.
By the time police got there, Elena-Lopez appeared to have hit a woman multiple times, dragging her across the floor.
The officer body cam footage showed a group of officer’s encountering the bleeding woman on the floor before firing at least three rounds toward Elena-Lopez in one of the store aisles.
He was told to turn on his stomach before being taken into custody and ultimately pronounced dead.
As officers searched the rest of the area for possible suspects and victims, they found a 14-year-old girl seemingly shot by a stray bullet inside a dressing room. The dressing room was located behind the suspect who was shot, and investigators believed the round came from an officer’s firearm.
“During a search for additional suspects and victims, officers discovered a victim of a gunshot wound; that victim was determined deceased at the scene,” LAPD said. “… one of the officer’s rounds penetrated a wall that was behind the suspect, beyond that wall was a dressing room. Officers searched the dressing room and found a 14 year old female victim who was struck by gunfire.”
Additional body-cam footage shows officers acknowledging that there were associates inside the store, and one of the officers going into the store with a “less-lethal” weapon.
On Monday civil rights attorney Ben Crump said he had been retained by the family of Valentina Orellana-Peralta, saying “her death was preventable.”
“Just days before Christmas, Valentina Orellana-Peralta was trying on Quinceañera dresses w/ her mom when police started shooting at a suspect outside of the dressing rooms,” Crump said in a tweet. “A stray bullet from an officer’s assault rifle struck & killed Valentina. Her death was preventable!”
LAPD said it is working with the L.A. mayor’s office to provide assistance to the Orellana-Peralta family.
Advertising disclosure: We may receive compensation for some of the links in our stories. Thank you for supporting LA Weekly and our advertisers.