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LAPD calls man in custody a suspect in San Fernando Valley killings

CrimeShootingsLos Angeles Police Department
L.A. police say man in custody is a suspect in a bizarre series of fatal shootings in the San Fernando Valley
The LAPD initially described Alexander Hernandez only as a 'person of interest' in slayings of three people

Los Angeles police on Monday described a man whom officers took into custody over the weekend as a suspect in a bizarre series of shootings that left three people dead in the San Fernando Valley on Sunday.

Alexander Hernandez, 34, was taken into custody hours after the shootings but was initially booked on an animal cruelty charge.

The LAPD initially described him only as a "person of interest" in the fatal shootings. But Officer Sara Faden said late Monday that detectives felt comfortable calling Hernandez a suspect in Sunday's three separate shootings.

LAPD Cmdr. Andrew Smith said Hernandez was suspected of shooting two dogs the day before Sunday's killings, which took place within a one-hour period and claimed the lives of two women and a man.

Online jail records showed Hernandez was being held in lieu of $1-million bail.

Police said a man opened fire with a shotgun at three different locations during Sunday's attacks. In addition to the three slayings, four other people were wounded.

Smith said detectives realized that descriptions of the suspect and the vehicle in the deadly shootings matched those of a man wanted in connection with the killing of the two dogs.

Hernandez was taken into custody late Sunday at his home in Sylmar.

Detectives are now working to determine whether the killings are linked to a rash of other recent shootings across Los Angeles.

For breaking crime news, follow Kate Mather at @katemather and Richard Winton at @lacrimes.

 

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