The woman who was found dead along the 710 Freeway Tuesday morning after apparently being shot in her vehicle was a 35-year-old mother, according to her family.

Authorities have identified the woman as Mercedes Mingo, a Los Angeles resident. Her aunt, Trina Schaffner, said Mingo had four children.

“It’s just not right,” said Schaffner, who added they were supposed to celebrate a family member’s birthday today.

Around noon today, Schaffner sobbed on the outskirt of a gas station near where Mingo’s car crashed. It had careened from the southbound 710 off-ramp at Anaheim Street into the Noil gas station lot in West Long Beach.

When authorities responded to the crash shortly after 2:30 a.m., they found Mingo suffering from at least one gunshot wound to the upper body. She was pronounced dead at the scene.

Witnesses from nearby businesses who saw the aftermath say the car was riddled with bullet holes and did not appear to have suffered much damage during the crash.

Police say the suspect in the shooting is at large.

Anyone with information on the case was urged to call the CHP Major Crimes Unit at 323-644-9557.

Editor’s note: After being published, this story was updated with Mingo’s identity and more details from Schaffner.

City News Service contributed to this report.

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