Youth pastor shot to death in Pomona; motive unknown

POMONA, Calif.

Authorities say a Pomona police officer was flagged down by four people in a vehicle in the area of Third and Thomas streets at 12:42 a.m., saying they had been shot at in the area of Park Avenue and Mayfair Street.

One of the passengers, identified as Daniel Diaz, had been shot. The 33-year-old West Covina resident was rushed to Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center, where he was later pronounced dead.

Diaz was a youth pastor at New Beginning Church in Baldwin Park, a church of 500 members led by his parents.

"Daniel was that Christian that you wanted to look up to, that person that you wanted to be like," said church member Raymond Iniquez.

Investigators say Diaz was with a friend and three young people he took to the movies Sunday night. They dropped off one teen in Pomona and were headed to the church's youth residence in Baldwin Park.

According to investigators, Diaz was sitting in the front passenger seat. The suspect approached the vehicle and shot Diaz four times.

The suspect fled the scene. A suspect description was not immediately available.

Anyone with information about the shooting is urged to call the Pomona Police Department's Detective Bureau at (909) 620-2085 or Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-8477.

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