Three Dead After Shootings at Downey Business, Home

The shootings occurred at two locations on the same Downey street

By Melissa Pamer and Jonathan Lloyd
|  Wednesday, Oct 24, 2012  |  Updated 11:45 PM PDT
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Downey police Lt. Dean Milligan explains what investigators know so far about the shootings that left three people death and two other critically injured in Downey. The incidents happened at a resident and a nearby business. Authorities are searching for the gunman, who they say drove off in a black Camaro. Stephanie Elam and Janet Zappala report from Downey for the NBC4 News at 6 p.m. on Oct. 24, 2012.

Stephanie Elam, Janet Zappala

Downey police Lt. Dean Milligan explains what investigators know so far about the shootings that left three people death and two other critically injured in Downey. The incidents happened at a resident and a nearby business. Authorities are searching for the gunman, who they say drove off in a black Camaro. Stephanie Elam and Janet Zappala report from Downey for the NBC4 News at 6 p.m. on Oct. 24, 2012.

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Three people were shot to death Wednesday at two locations two blocks apart in Downey, and authorities were continuing to search for the gunman.

Two other victims were hospitalized in critical condition after the shootings at a business in the 8700 block of Cleta Street (map) and at a residence in the 8500 block of Cleta Street, Downey Fire Department officials said.

The gunman was described as a 6-foot-1-inch black male weighing about 230 pounds and wearing a white T-shirt.

He fled in a 2010 black Chevrolet Camaro, with California license plate 6LEA010. A records search shows the vehicle is registered to the Cleta Street home where the victims were shot.

A man and woman were found dead at the business, identified as United States Fire Protection, which is across the street from a Coca-Cola bottling plant. Another female victim was found at the nearby home, police said.

"It's believed that the family members own both the business and the residence. I'm still not sure of the relationship between the victims at both locations, but it is believed they all are related," said Downey police Lt. Dean Milligan.

The first 911 call came in with a report of shots fired at 11:12 a.m. at the business, according to a press release from Downey police. Five minutes later, the 911 call from the home came, again reporting shots fired.

Officers arriving found several gunshot victims at each location.

Dean Wright, who works next door, described the business as a family-owned fire extinguisher company. He told NBC4 family members lived at the Cleta Street residence located just a few blocks from the business.

"I'm right next door, and I never even heard a shot," said Wright. "I looked and the police had surrounded the building.

"It's so sad."

No motive has been indentified, but police were interviewing neighbors and reviewing surveillance video.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Downey police Sgt. Dwayne Cooper at (562) 904-2340.

NBC4's Stephanie Elam contributed to this report.

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