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Shots Fired on 101, I-210

Times Staff Writer

Authorities are investigating two Saturday freeway shootings, one of which left an 18-year-old woman hospitalized in critical condition.

About 10 p.m. Saturday night a gunman fired multiple shots into a Nissan Altima carrying a driver and two passengers east on the Foothill Freeway near the Mount Olive Drive exit in Duarte, according to the California Highway Patrol.

Before the shots, the driver and back-seat passenger in the Nissan saw a dark-colored Honda with tinted windows driving close behind their car, then pulling up along the passenger side of their vehicle, according to the incident report.

At that point a man in dark clothing stuck a pistol out of the left rear window of the Honda, the report said.

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Then the victim yelled, “Oh my gosh, duck!” said CHP Officer Edmund Zorrilla. Three shots struck the 18-year-old woman, who was taken to St. Francis Medical Center in Lynwood in critical condition. Authorities did not release her name.

The driver and a back-seat passenger were not injured.

There was no clear motive for the shooting, Zorrilla said.

“At this point we would characterize it as random, just random,” he said. “We don’t have any matchup with other cases.”

In an earlier freeway shooting Saturday morning, a bullet shattered the right front window of a tow truck carrying an adult and a child south on the Ventura Freeway near Dawson Drive in Camarillo, according to the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department.

There were no injuries in the shooting. The passengers described the shooter as a bald Latino man in his late 20s driving a dark green, late model Honda Civic containing three passengers, sheriff’s officials said.

“The victims are telling us they were minding their own business when they heard a pop” in the window, said Watch Cmdr. Bob Lemay of the Sheriff’s Department.

Investigators recovered a bullet lodged in the tow truck’s passenger-side sun visor and a shell casing on the freeway, Lemay said.

“I don’t think it’s related, but who knows at this point?” Lemay said of the two Saturday shootings. CHP officials also said it was too early to know if the shootings were related.

There have been at least 26 freeway shootings in the Southland since March 12, officials said, but there is no clear connection among them. The shootings often have no clear motive. They have led to at least four deaths and no arrests.

Last year, 36 freeway shootings were reported in the city of Los Angeles, only one of which resulted in a death.


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