Final moments before pride flag killing emerge, along with disturbing portrait of gunman

A person kneels to leave flowers at a memorial outside a storefront
A resident leaves flowers at a makeshift memorial outside the Mag.Pi clothing store in Lake Arrowhead.
(Robyn Beck / AFP via Getty Images)

For years before last week’s killing of a businesswoman who displayed a pride flag in front of her Lake Arrowhead shop, the gunman, Travis Ikeguchi, posted far-right, conspiratorial content to his social media accounts.

Most of it had no personal detail. There were rants against the LGBTQ+ community, posts about political correctness as well as anti-police content. Ikeguchi posted often on his Christian beliefs and about the importance of accepting Jesus Christ.

Days after Ikeguchi, 27, was killed by San Bernardino County sheriff’s deputies following the shooting of Laura Ann Carleton outside her shop, Mag.Pi, few details have been revealed about who Ikeguchi was beyond his fringe political beliefs.


Authorities said Ikeguchi made “several disparaging remarks about a rainbow flag” outside Carleton’s store Friday and hurled homophobic slurs at her. The heated argument then turned violent, and Ikeguchi fatally shot Carleton, 66, before running away, according to the Sheriff’s Department.

According to an acquaintance of Carleton who watched closed-circuit video of the shooting, Ikeguchi seemed to pause in the moment before he shot Carleton, as if considering what he was about to do.

“He then almost flinched as if thinking twice but then went for it, grabbed the gun and then aimed it and shot Lauri,” said the acquaintance, who requested anonymity because the video did not belong to him.

“That caused her to fall back onto the floor, and then the door swung closed, and then he shot one shot through that door and then took off.”

Carleton was holding a phone when she was shot and never exited her store, according to the acquaintance.

A short time later, deputies confronted Ikeguchi and shot him to death after he opened fire, the department said.


Friends and family say the slain Lake Arrowhead shop owner and mother of nine was a pillar in the community, equal parts entrepreneur and advocate.

Aug. 22, 2023

Court documents and a few social media posts paint a narrow picture of Ikeguchi’s troubled life, a young man struggling to make ends meet and support his mother while falling further into an abyss of social media conspiracy theories and hate-fueled rhetoric online.

Ikeguchi moved to California with his sister and mother after his parents divorced in 2018.

He appeared to have an account on the social media platform Gab, where a user with his name routinely posted anti-LGBTQ+ screeds and conspiratorial content. He posted often about his distrust in police — and at least once about killing police, social media posts show.

“I know it’s controversial for me to mention the option to kill a police officer, but these police officers are not the servants for the people they are the servants for the laws,” a post in 2021 reads.

The posts belie the fact that Ikeguchi was the son of a Florida Highway Patrol state trooper and firearms instructor who had reached the level of “master trooper,” according to court filings.

But a messy divorce left Ikeguchi with animosity toward his father.

An account on the social media platform Gab under Travis Ikeguchi’s name routinely posted anti-LGBTQ+ screeds, anti-police rhetoric and conspiratorial content.

Aug. 22, 2023

Ikeguchi claimed in early 2019 that he and his mother were living in their car and struggling to afford food after the divorce.


He started a GoFundMe asking for money for housing and food.

“I don’t have a home and I don’t have enough money for a place to stay and eat,” he wrote in a tweet that linked to the GoFundMe page.

“Nobody in my family is going to help me on this; they are selfish and greedy when it comes to helping out with others especially me. And the sad part of it is that all them work for the government,” he continued.

He claimed that his father was using his law enforcement position to “withhold money” and “leave us penniless.”

In divorce filings, however, Ikeguchi’s father said he continued to pay auto insurance and spousal support throughout the divorce process.

The murdered Lake Arrowhead shop owner like many others before her, appears to have died for expressing her conviction that sexual orientation and gender non-conformity have no role in determining who does or does not belong.

Aug. 21, 2023

Ikeguchi’s mother said that she was living with her son and his sister in California and that Ikeguchi was supporting her.

“My son Travis had to use his remaining college money to support us,” she said.

The living situation deteriorated, and Ikeguchi’s sister asked them to leave, according to his mother’s filing.


Ikeguchi continued to post on social media after the divorce resolved in 2020.

In 2021, he filed for a name change in San Bernardino County, according to court filings.

He was granted a change from Travis Kirby Ikeguchi to Timothy Thomas Yokohama, according to filings.

“Taking the name of my ancestry,” he listed for his reason for changing his name.