Mario Morales-Moreno was an Army veteran and father of two children who was a fixture in his North Long Beach neighborhood, according to a neighbor. Photo courtesy Kristi Wyffels.

Police say they’ve arrested four men responsible for killing a 51-year-old Army veteran who was shot while he did yard work outside his North Long Beach home on April 4.

Detectives don’t believe Mario Morales-Moreno was the intended target in the shooting, which they suspect was gang-related.

“Gang-related violence has no place in any part of our city, and this callous criminal act has forever changed the lives of Mr. Moreno’s family,” said Long Beach Chief of Police Wally Hebeish. Another man was also wounded in the shooting but is expected to survive.


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Morales-Moreno had a wife and two children, according to his neighbor, Kristi Wyffels, who started an online fundraiser for them.

“As neighbors we are heartbroken and his family is still in shock,” Wyffels said.

Hebeish didn’t say how police connected the suspected shooters to the crime, but he said the quick arrests were thanks to “tireless investigative work.”

That included searching locations in the cities of Long Beach, Bellflower, and Indio.

Officers found “multiple firearms,” according to the Long Beach Police Department.

They identified the four suspects as follows:

  • Taylor Byron Woods, a 20-year-old resident of Bellflower, was arrested the night of the shooting after officers found him nearby with a firearm, according to police.
  • Tyrell Deshawn Louden, a 20-year-old resident of Indio, was arrested in Indio on April 9.
  • Jordan Omarion Stokes, an 18-year-old resident of Long Beach, was arrested by Gardena Police on April 6 for weapons violations unrelated to the killing and has since been transferred to LBPD custody.
  • Semaj Lamar Obrien, a 21-year-old resident of Long Beach, was arrested on April 8.

Police said they will present the case to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office for filing consideration later this week.

Jeremiah Dobruck is managing editor of the Long Beach Post. Reach him at [email protected] or @jeremiahdobruck on Twitter.