Shooting at Trader Joe’s parking lot leaves 1 dead, 3 wounded

Police investigate the scene of a fatal shooting in a West Hills shopping center parking lot.
Police investigate the scene of a shooting in a West Hills shopping parking lot at 6751 Fallbrook Ave. in West Hills. One person was killed and three people were injured, police said.
(Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times)

One person was killed and three others were wounded in a shooting Saturday afternoon in the parking lot of a Trader Joe’s store in the San Fernando Valley, police said.

The incident occurred around 3:45 p.m. in the parking lot of Fallbrook Center, a retail complex that is also home to a Target, Home Depot and Walmart. Los Angeles police were investigating whether there was a gun battle at the scene, said Deputy Chief Alan Hamilton of the Los Angeles Police Department.

“There is a possibility we had parties firing at each other,” he said.

As officers descended on the scene, a suspect fled in a car and was spotted by a police helicopter, Hamilton said. Officers in the helicopter saw the alleged suspect switch vehicles and directed police cars to the area to block an escape. At some point there was a hit-and-run with another motorist and a person was treated for injuries, Hamilton said.

The suspect was detained following a short pursuit and was taken into custody without incident at Owensmouth Avenue and Saticoy Street, Hamilton said. Investigators found two firearms and are working to determine if at least one of the injured was also involved in the shooting, Hamilton said.

“We believe everyone that was involved in the dispute here is either in custody or the hospital,” Hamilton said.