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1 shot, 1 arrested after alleged Gardena 7-Eleven robbery

January 20, 2013 12:00:00 AM PST
One man was shot and another was arrested after they allegedly robbed a Gardena 7-Eleven on Sunday.

According to Los Angeles County detectives, the two men entered the 7-Eleven at 168th Street and Vermont Avenue around 3 a.m. armed with a knife and a hammer and made off with beers and more.

A witness noticed the crime in progress and dialed 911.

"When the first unit arrived on scene, he saw the suspects running away from the location," said Los Angeles County Sheriff's Lt. Holly Francisco. "When he confronted the suspects, the suspect refused to obey his commands and an officer-involved shooting did occur."

One of the suspects was shot at 168th and Vermont. He was hospitalized and underwent surgery for his wound, according to his brother, Eric Avalos.

"They didn't have a gun, what's the reason to shoot somebody?" Avalos said. "You've got to stop them before doing some type of thing like that, you know?"

According to Los Angeles County Detectives, Avalos' brother is expected to make a full recovery.

The other suspect was arrested after a brief foot chase that ended at the corner of 167th and Ainsworth streets.

The gunfire woke up neighbors.

"I heard five gunshots and heard the officer say, 'Show us your hands. Quit moving, stay down. Show us your hands,'" said Alex Vieyra. "He was yelling, 'I'm dying, I'm dying, please help me,' and the ambulance took him away."

Several people argued the Gardena police used excessive force.

"It's beer, you know? If they had guns they would've pulled them out. Or if they had guns, they would've seen them, right?" said Metro Gutierrez, one of the suspect's friends. "Well, a knife. Really?"

No Gardena police officers were injured in the shooting. The shooting remains under investigation, and sheriff's investigator will determine is the shooting was justified.