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Police: Man shot in Santa Monica dies; city's 3rd shooting in 5 days

One of two men shot Tuesday morning in an alley near Santa Monica College has died, law enforcement sources confirmed.

The second victim was in surgery, they said.

The incident began about 8:15 a.m. when a gunman walked up as two men stood in the alley in the 1500 block of Michigan Avenue and opened fire, said Santa Monica police Sgt. Richard Lewis.

The suspect ran to a vehicle, believed to be a blue Infiniti, which drove away westbound on Michigan.

Officers found the victims, described as men 25 to 35 years old, with multiple gunshot wounds to the upper body, Lewis said. Paramedics took them to the trauma center, where one died. Their names were unavailable.

Police were searching Tuesday for the suspect and vehicle.

The incident marked the third shooting in Santa Monica in five days. On Friday, authorities say 23-year-old John Zawahri killed his father and brother in their Yorkshire Avenue home and embarked on a bloody rampage to Santa Monica College. Zawahri killed three other people before police fatally shot him in the school library.

On Sunday afternoon, police said a cyclist was shot and wounded on Yorkshire Boulevard, a few blocks north of the Zawahri home. That man was in stable condition, Lewis said Tuesday.

Law enforcement sources familiar with the investigation said Tuesday's incident was not related to Friday's rampage, but said authorities were looking into whether it was connected to the Sunday shooting.

Lewis said that as of Monday, crime in Santa Monica was down 10% compared with the same time last year. The L.A. Times Homicide Report shows that one homicide occurred in Santa Monica in 2012 and two the previous year.

"Santa Monica's a very quiet city," Lewis said. "This particular neighborhood has in the past -- not for a few years  now -- been subject to a few shootings, some gang violence."

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