Image: Parents at the gates of Carver middle School.
Reed Saxon  /  AP
Parents and others stream through a gate as police officers admit them in groups of 25 to George Washington Carver Middle School in Los Angeles after a shooting a block away led to a campus lockdown on Thursday.
updated 2/28/2008 5:21:10 PM ET 2008-02-28T22:21:10

A gunman who wounded five children and three adults at a South Los Angeles bus stop was aiming at a specific person and wound up shooting bystanders, police said Thursday.

“There was a target,” Capt. Rigo Romero said.

A suspect was arrested, and Police Chief William Bratton and Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa planned to announce more details during a news conference Thursday evening.

Police had said they were confident the gunman would be quickly caught because there were many witnesses. Romero said more than 100 people were at the intersection.

Armed with a semiautomatic handgun, the man opened fire around 3:15 p.m. Wednesday at a busy intersection filled with shoppers, motorists and students.

Bratton said the gunman got into a dispute with someone and fired 15 to 16 rounds at him but missed and instead hit the victims.

Two of the victims ran away and were found outside a nearby middle school, police Officer Sara Faden said.

The gunman ran away after firing the shots, she said.

Police and fire officials initially reported that the child victims were four girls and a boy. On Thursday police changed that to three boys and two girls. Some victims’ ages were also adjusted.

A 12-year-old girl who was shot in the chest remained hospitalized Thursday but “she’s going to be fine,” Officer Karen Smith said.

Smith said six other people were treated at hospitals and released: a 12-year-old girl who was shot in the arm; two 12-year-old boys were treated for leg wounds; a 15-year-old boy who was grazed in the thigh; a 43-year-old man was treated for a wounded knee; and a woman, 48, was shot in the face.

A 68-year-old man was treated at the scene for a wound to his right arm, she said.

All were expected to recover.

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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