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Santa Monica Pier Shooting Was Gang Related, Police Say

Bob Kronovetrealty
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By Jorge Casuso

October 17, 2019 -- Wednesday's night's shooting in a Santa Monica Pier parking lot that injured one man was triggered by an encounter between two gangs, police said.

The suspects in the shooting that took place shortly before 10 p.m., have been identified as a group of male Hispanics, possibly gang members in their early 20s, police said.

"The incident appears to be a spontaneous gang related encounter," said Lt. Candice Cobarrubias, the Police Department spokesperson.

"Both parties became involved in a verbal altercation on the pier, resulting in the shooting," Cobarrubias said.

Witnesses said the victim fell to the ground before trying to limp away. Two men then jumped into a white vehicle and raced from the scene at the 1550 lot north of the pier.

The victim was struck in the lower leg by the single shot fired and transported to a local hospital where he was treated for the non-life threatening injury, police said.

The suspects were last seen leaving the parking lot in a small sedan or smaller SUV, Cobarrubias said.

"Officers canvassed the area and were unable to locate the suspects," she said.

Wednesday night marked the third shooting, one of them fatal, on or near the Pier in the past two years.

In November 2017 a shoot-out involving two party buses near the Pier left a 28-year-old woman dead ("Shooting Incidents in Santa Monica Heighten Concern Over Crime," November 6, 2017).

De'Ommie De La Cruz was struck by a stray bullet shortly before 1 a.m. on November 3 after returning to the bus from a bathroom break with friends.

De La Cruz's friends said they were hesitant to leave the bus after seeing passengers on the other bus who looked like gang members ("Family and Friends of Party Bus Shooting Victim Sue City," November 29, 2018).

Two or three men were seen fleeing westbound in Palisades Park and jumping over a railing towards Pacific Coast Highway, police said.

This February, Santa Monica police arrested Camron Lee, 22, as a person of interest in the fatal shooting.

The Department has not released any further information on that or any other arrest made related to the shooting.

Last August, a 26-year old woman was shot in the thigh on the Pier ("Woman Shot on Santa Monica Pier," August 23, 2018).

Ivan Galiano, 20, of Rancho Cucamonga, was arrested and charged with attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon and being a felon in possession of a handgun ("Suspect Charged with Attempted Murder of Woman on Santa Monica Pier," August 30, 2018).

Detectives investigating Wednesday night's shooting are asking for the public’s help in identifying the suspects, Cobarrubias said.

Anyone with any information that may be useful to the investigation should contact the Robbery/Homicide Division at 310-458-8451 or the Watch Commander at 310-458-8427.

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