LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Police in Los Angeles arrested a man who took hostages and barricaded himself inside a Trader Joe’s store on Saturday, ending a three-hour standoff during which he fatally shot a woman inside, authorities said.
A police officer talks with a woman in a parking lot across the street from a Trader Joe’s store where a hostage situation unfolded in Los Angeles, California, Saturday July 21, 2018. REUTERS/Andrew Cullen
The man, who was being chased by police after he was suspected of repeatedly shooting his grandmother and another woman in a separate part of the city, crashed his car outside the Trader Joe’s, where he exchanged gunfire with police and entered the crowded store.
He was shot in the arm and talked with police over the phone to negotiate a surrender, Mayor Eric Garcetti and police told a news conference.
The man, 28 and not named by police, went out of the store and was surrounded by police.
Once he was in custody, about 20 people who were in the store could be seen spilling on to the street.
“Inside the Trader Joe’s the suspect shot a female victim. She was pronounced dead at scene,” police said on Twitter.
The woman has not yet been identified.
“The suspect at the end asked for handcuffs. He handcuffed himself and then released himself into the custody of L.A. police,” Garcetti said.
During the standoff, aerial footage from local TV stations NBC Los Angeles and CBS Los Angeles showed people leaving a store window using a rope ladder and police carrying children to safety through a parking lot in the city’s Silver Lake neighborhood.
More than an hour after the standoff began, a few hostages were shown on TV leaving the store through the front door.
Some of those who escaped said they hid in employee areas in the back of the store.
U.S. President Donald Trump said he was watching the possible hostage situation very closely.
“Active barricaded suspect. L.A.P.D. working with Federal Law Enforcement,” Trump wrote on Twitter before the arrest.
Reporting by Andrew Cullen; Additional reporting and writing by Jon Herskovitz; Editing by James Dalgleish, Daniel Wallis and Himani Sarkar