Navy veteran murdered in Inglewood, leaving girlfriend to raise their daughter

Josh Haskell Image
Saturday, February 18, 2023
Navy veteran murdered while exiting freeway in Inglewood
Bria Echols and her boyfriend Carl Flenoy, a 28-year-old Navy veteran, were driving home one night last month when someone fired into their car, killing Carl and leaving Bria to raise their 14-month-old daughter.

INGLEWOOD, Calif. (KABC) -- Bria Echols, her boyfriend Carl Flenoy, and their 14-month-old daughter Chance lived a happy life in Inglewood.

In the early morning hours of Saturday, Jan. 28, Echols and Flenoy were on their way home after a night out with friends in Marina Del Rey when their lives changed forever.

Bria says her vehicle was at the 405 Freeway off-ramp at La Tijera Boulevard around 2 a.m. when she looked up and at her car window and saw a man there holding a gun.

"It happened all so fast," Echols said.

"Carl hit the gas. I hear a shot and then we hit head-on another vehicle. Immediately open the door and we start yelling for help. I look over and Carl is slumped. There's blood everywhere. All over my phone and he's not responding."

Two men who were in a vehicle directly behind the couple on the off-ramp got out and one suspect approached the passenger side, then tried to open the car door, but it was locked. Another suspect approached the driver side and Echols says that suspect fired a shot that hit Flenoy as he attempted to speed off.

"There was no reason for us to suspect that someone wanted to do this or follow us. I believe it was a random act of violence or mistaken identity 'cause I just can't see any cause to why anyone would want to do this to Carl," Echols said.

According to witnesses, the suspects then got into a four-door burgundy sedan and left the scene. No one is in custody.

Echols says authorities haven't been able to get a license plate because some of the cameras nearby weren't working. Now Echols is left to raise daughter Chance alone.

Flenoy, a Navy veteran and a loving dad, was only 28 years old.

"It makes me scared. A little bit afraid to leave my home. Not even a little bit. You can't do something as simple as go on a date or wait or exit a freeway. I feel like a piece of me is gone. It hurts. Literally my protector. My best friend. It was to a point where we were finishing each other's sentences," said Echols.

Anyone who may have been in the area that night is asked to call the California Highway Patrol.

Here's a link to the family's GoFundMe page if you would like to help.