A string of gun violence that started Friday afternoon has left three people wounded and one killed over the stretch of less than 24 hours in Long Beach.
The separate attacks began around 2:40 p.m., Friday when a 25-year-old man was killed in an alley near 14th Street and Elm Avenue, police said.
“I heard four shots,” said a neighbor, who did not wish to give her name out of fear of retaliation. She recalled another shooting that happened nearby a couple of months ago, saying she heard the gunfire that day, too.
“The crazy part is both shootings happened in broad daylight,” she said.
Police rushed to several more reports of gunfire in the following hours.
- The first occurred around 9:55 p.m. Friday when a man was walking in the area of 12th Street and Pacific Avenue where he was shot, according to the LBPD. He was hospitalized but expected to survive. The man did not want to cooperate with the investigation and information on a suspect is unknown, according to police.
- About half an hour later, police arrived at the 2400 block of Pasadena Avenue, near the border of Signal Hill, for a call about a shooting. Police said a residence with a woman inside was struck by gunfire, but no one was injured. A motive for the shooting and a description of a suspect are unknown at this time, police said.
- At 11:15 p.m., officers went to a local hospital to meet with a wounded man who said he was shot during a failed robbery, police said. The man was walking in the area of Pacific Coast Highway and Magnolia Avenue when two other men in a vehicle approached him and attempted to rob him, according to the LBPD. The man refused to obey them, and he was shot, police said. Officers checked the area where the man said it happened, but they couldn’t find any other evidence of the crime, police said.
The violence also continued into the day Saturday.
Officers arrived to the scene of a shooting call at the 2300 block of Lime Avenue shortly after noon, police spokeswoman Arantxa Chavarria said. Officers located a man with gunshot wounds to his lower body, and he was taken to a local hospital. No other injuries were reported, Chavarria said.
Gang detectives arrived on the scene to investigate the shooting, according to police. A preliminary investigation revealed that the man and a woman were walking together when two other men approached them and fired at them. The woman was not injured, and the suspected shooters fled in a dark-colored sedan before police could arrive, according to Chavarria.
It’s unclear if any of the shootings are related in any way. Police have said recently that they’re fighting a rise in gun violence.
“I work in human services, and I just feel like the boiling point is rising,” said the neighbor who overheard Friday’s deadly shooting.
We have experienced an increase in violent crime in the past week and it is our shared responsibility to stop this senseless violence.— Long Beach PD (CA) (@LBPD) January 23, 2021
Here is what the #LBPD will be doing to deter crime in the affected areas ⬇️ #LBPDSafety #SeeSomethingSaySomething #LongBeach pic.twitter.com/HYO6TjncLQ
The LBPD posted a statement on its social media accounts Saturday acknowledging the recent surge in violent crimes.
“We have experienced an increase in violent crime in the past week and it is our shared responsibility to stop this senseless violence,” the post read.
Last month, the LBPD said it had focused officers and analysts on areas where shootings have been happening to try to get guns off the streets.
LBPD Assistant Chief Wally Hebeish also tweeted on Saturday that officers had seized an assault rifle from a driver they stopped.
#LBPD officers arrested the driver of a vehicle (on probation and prohibited from possessing guns) for traveling with this illegal assault weapon. Officers face unknown danger like this each day. We are thankful for their courage and service to our city! pic.twitter.com/rZ6thdLAkD— Chief Wally Hebeish (@LBPDChief) January 23, 2021
While Friday and Saturday’s shootings took place in and around Central Long Beach, North Long Beach residents are planning a virtual roundtable on Feb. 26 to discuss solutions to quell gun violence in their area.
Editor’s note: This article was updated with further details on Saturday’s shooting.