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Watts shooting began as domestic call; 3 dead

March 8, 2013 12:00:00 AM PST
Three people are dead in what began as a domestic violence call in a Watts neighborhood early Friday morning.

Authorities received the call just before 3 a.m. in the area of Imperial Highway and Croesus Avenue, near Grape and 115th streets. When police arrived at the scene, they found a man shot to death inside a red pickup truck parked outside of a home.

"They then heard screaming coming from a house. They went over to investigate that when the suspect fired at the officers," said LAPD Detective Gus Villanueva.

The suspected gunman barricaded himself inside the house on the 11500 block of Grape Street. Police say the suspect continued to fire shots at them from inside. The officers returned fire and a firefight continued for what police say was an undetermined amount of time.

A SWAT team was called in, and a standoff lasted for several hours. At one point, two children, an 8-year-old boy and a 3-year-old girl, ran out of the house and told police that their parents were dead.

When SWAT officers entered the home, they found the gunman dead from what appeared to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound. A woman, believed to be the suspect's wife, was also shot. She was rushed to a local hospital, where she later died.

Police say they don't know if there was a relationship between the couple and the victim in the red truck.

A 1-year-old boy was also found inside the home unharmed. All three children are expected to be OK and are in protective custody. The incident remains under investigation.


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