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Police Mobilize After Two More Shootings in Pico Neighborhood

By Lookout Staff

July 10 -- Police are mobilizing “an overwhelming presence” after three gang-related shootings in the Pico neighborhood last week, including two over the weekend.

The latest incident took place at around 3 p.m. Sunday on the 1900 block of Euclid when several individuals narrowly escaped injury after a car pulled up next to the vehicle they were in and began firing, according to police.

The shooting came two days after a Hispanic man was shot in the upper body at the City’s newly expanded Virginia Avenue Park around just after dusk Friday. The victim was taken to a local hospital where he was treated for a non-life-threatening wound, police said.

A July 4 shooting on the 1900 block of 19th street also put a 25-year-old black man from Santa Monica in the hospital with non-life threatening injuries. (see story)

“The cycle of violence that has developed over the last week will not be permitted to continue,” Police Chief James Butts, Jr. wrote in a statement released Sunday. “It will be stopped by an overwhelming police presence.”

“Effective immediately, the already enhanced patrol in the Pico Neighborhood will again be increased and there will be a more frequent deployment of the police helicopter,” Butts wrote. “The individuals involved in these three incidents will be brought to justice."

Police are seeking information into all three shootings and no arrests had been made.

In the shooting Sunday police are seeking two suspects who were reportedly driving a late 1980s to early 1990s two-door Honda Accord, gray with a black bumper.

The suspects are described as Hispanic males between the ages of 14 and16 police said. One suspect is 5’6 to 5’10 with dark hair and a heavy build. He was wearing a black hat with a white “T” shirt.

The second suspect is around 5’10 with a thin build and dark hair, police said. He was wearing a black hat with a white “T” shirt.

In Friday’s shooting in the park, the suspect is described as 15-year-old Hispanic male, 5’8 and weighing approximately 180 pounds, police said. He was wearing a white baggy “T” shirt and shorts.

A preliminary investigation indicates the incident appears to be gang related, however, the victim did not have any gang affiliation, according to police.

The suspects in the July 4 shooting were described by police as “two male Hispanics in a metallic blue 2-door compact vehicle.”

Although the three shootings are gang-related, police are still investigating if the incidents, which appear to be isolated, are connected.

Police also are investigating if gangs from outside Santa Monica were involved.

"We're still looking into that," said Lt. Alex Padilla, a police department spokesman. "We're still investigating that."

Chief Butts has said that much of the gang violence is perpetrated by gang members from outside the City. (see story)

Anyone having information regarding these incidents should call the Robbery/Homicide unit of the Santa Monica Police Department at 310-458-8451 or the Watch Commander’s Office at 310-458-8426.

Callers who wish to provide anonymous information may also call the We-Tip national hotline at 1-800-78-CRIME (27463).

Callers with information that leads to an arrest and conviction become eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.

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