Community Raises Over $200K for Father of Two Killed in LA Shooting Spree

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A 42-year-old Asian American father of two young children is one of two victims killed in a series of shootings in Los Angeles early Tuesday morning.

The incident: A man in a Jeep Cherokee, identified as Carlos Lopez-Melendez, 50, went on five separate drive-by shootings in and around downtown LA in the span of thirty minutes, reports ABC7. He killed two men and injured a third.

  • Lopez-Melendez began the shooting spree at around 1 a.m. when he shot and wounded Seth Jones in the area of Figueroa Street and Exposition Boulevard, CBSLA reported. 
  • He then fatally shot a man, identified as Alexis Carbajal, 24, in a Starbucks drive-thru at Figueroa and 28th streets. Carbajal, a newlywed, leaves behind his mother, sisters and wife.
  • The third drive-by shooting, which happened at Figueroa and 7th streets, claimed the life of an Uber driver, later identified as Asian American Mingzhi Zhu.

More details: Zhu was driving his Cadillac Escalade to pick up a passenger at about 1:25 a.m., when the gunman opened fire at him through the SUV’s window, reports NBC4

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  • Lopez-Melendez, who fired at officers following a police pursuit, was killed by authorities during a standoff on the 91 Freeway in Fullerton.
  • The LAPD has yet to identify the suspect’s motive and described the attack to be random in nature. 
  • “We are very mindful of the potentiality for that and leaning into that very actively,” LAPD Police Chief Michel Moore said when asked if the shootings would be investigated as a hate crime.

Terrible loss: Zhu is survived by his two children aged 2 and 8 and wife who are now at a “total loss,” according to a representative.

  • “He was a hard-working, gentle, kind, deeply loving father and very dedicated husband,” said the family spokesperson.
  • The South Pasadena community has set up a GoFundMe page describing Zhu as an “honest man who cared for other people and loved his family above all else.”
  • The crowdfunding effort, which aims to support the grieving family, has so far exceeded its $50,000 goal as of this writing, raising over $200,000.

Featured Image via GoFundMe

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