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1 dead, 3 seriously wounded in shooting outside L.A. Trader Joe's

The Saturday afternoon shooting appeared to have been sparked by a drug dispute, police said. Three people were in custody.

One person was killed and three others were seriously injured Saturday in a drug-related shootout outside a Trader Joe's grocery in Los Angeles, police said.

The shooting was reported at 3:45 p.m. in the community of West Hills in the San Fernando Valley, Los Angeles Police Officer J. Chavez said.

A 45-year-old was declared dead at the scene, said Los Angeles Fire Department spokesperson Margaret Stewart.

A 35-year-old woman was hospitalized in critical condition, and another 35-year-old woman and a 45-year-old man were in serious to critical condition at a hospital, officials said.

Authorities respond to a shooting in a West Hills shopping center in Los Angeles on April 1, 2023.
Authorities respond to a shooting in Los Angeles on Saturday.NBC Los Angeles

Police believe at least two people opened fire during the drug-related dispute in the parking lot.

"The dispute centered around a narcotics transaction in the area," LAPD Deputy Chief Alan Hamilton said during a news conference Saturday night. "During that pursuit, multiple suspects produced firearms and fired at each other."

Two firearms connected to the case have been recovered, he said.

Three suspects were in custody, police said, and some of those people at the hospital will be interviewed to determine if they may be suspects as well, Hamilton said.

One of those in custody was a man who fled in a vehicle with windows that had been shot out, the deputy chief said.

After a hit-and-run collision, he said, the suspect switched somehow to another vehicle driven by a woman but ultimately surrendered to pursuing officers.

The woman was one of the three in custody, Hamilton said.

None of those hospitalized, including a hit-and-run victim, had life-threatening injuries, he said.