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Gunman sought in shooting

Crime: Authorities seek murder weapon, assailant in Canyon Country attack

Posted: November 2, 2011 1:55 a.m.
Updated: November 2, 2011 1:55 a.m.

One gunman was still being sought Tuesday in a double shooting in Canyon Country, and two other suspects — both minors — were in custody following an apparent robbery turned murder, a homicide lieutenant said.

Two people arrested Monday night in the death of one man and the shooting of another were released after being interviewed by homicide detectives.

Meanwhile, deputies were searching Tuesday for the weapon used Monday afternoon in a robbery that detectives said began as the sale of a Nintendo game system in the parking lot of the Canyon Country post office.

“We have identified the shooter,” Lt. Eddie Hernandez said Tuesday. The suspect, like the two in custody, is a juvenile, Hernandez said.

“Investigators are going back to the area for another search for the gun,” Hernandez said. “We don’t know where it was discarded.”

Investigators did not release the name of the man who was shot and killed as he tried to come to the aid of the robbery victim in the 18300 block of Soledad Canyon Road.

The robbery victim, who was shot in the leg, was transported to a local hospital and was expected to recover. His name was also withheld.

A spokesman for the Los Angeles County Department of Coroner said late Tuesday that the body of the homicide victim had not arrived at the coroner’s office.

Two male suspects, both 17, were being detained in connection with the shooting at a juvenile hall in Sylmar, Hernandez said. Minors’ names are not released unless they’re ordered to stand trial as adults.

Two others — an adult and a juvenile — who were also taken in for questioning were released after being interviewed, Hernandez added.

The suspects fled across Soledad Canyon Road, through a mobile home park and into the Canyon Oaks condominium complex, also known as the American Beauty condos.

Investigators on Tuesday were searching the wash between the shooting site and the condos for the gun used in the shooting.

Arrests in condo complex
Canyon Oaks residents recalled a frenetic takedown arrest of four people.

According to one woman, who asked not to be identified for fear of reprisal, the two initially arrested and the two in custody, all live in the complex.

A dragnet of more than 20 deputies of the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station surrounded the complex, residents said.

With helicopters overhead, deputies strategically positioned throughout the maze of condos, some with service handguns drawn, were seen darting along walkways and positioned in driveways.

They converged on a park area situated at the heart of the complex near a play structure and pool, residents said.

The suspects were handcuffed and taken away by deputies.

No shots were heard fired and no one reportedly was hurt during the arrests.

“I was on my way to the post office with my head phones on to drop the rent check off,” said Canyon Oaks resident
Aaron Blackman, who was near the pool, identifying a pathway that runs from the complex to Solamint Road.

“I was at Solamint when I looked up. There was a police car that just came swoosh — and they jumped out. And I said,
‘What the hell.’ And they said, ‘Did you see three guys run through here?’”

“Another guy jumped out of the car looking over the hood,” Blackman said. “They all had their hands on their guns, some of them walking around with pistols.

“They had this building cordoned off at the end,” he said, adding that he made his way to the post office.

“Police were screeching tires out of there (post office parking lot) like they were in NASCAR — coming here, police with guns drawn and I knew where they were going. They were coming right here.”


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