Churchgoers Help Thwart Suspected Car Burglars

A suspected car burglar fired a rifle into a crowd of churchgoers who had confronted him and an accomplice, but no one was injured, police said Monday.

Two suspects, Mario Marroquin, 19, and a male juvenile, allegedly were breaking into a car near the intersection of Saturn and Rugby avenues about 8 p.m. Sunday when they were confronted by several worshipers leaving La Luz del Mundo Church, said Huntington Park Police Lt. Tom Weselis.

A confrontation developed and one of the suspects pulled out a cutting tool and slashed a churchgoer across the chest, slightly injuring him, Weselis said.

The suspects left and returned a short time later with a military carbine, and Marroquin allegedly fired a single round from 35 feet away into the crowd of men, women and children leaving the church. No one was hit.

About 10 churchgoers chased the suspects nine blocks to the intersection of Santa Fe and Gage avenues, where police took the suspects into custody, authorities said.