String of California 7-Eleven shootings leave 2 dead, 3 hurt

Jul 11, 2022, 1:44 AM | Updated: 6:35 pm
Officials investigate after officers found two victims with gunshot wounds following a robbery at a...

Officials investigate after officers found two victims with gunshot wounds following a robbery at a 7-Eleven in La Habra, Calif., on Monday, July 11, 2022. (Paul Bersebach/The Orange County Register via AP)

(Paul Bersebach/The Orange County Register via AP)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Two people were killed and three wounded in robberies before dawn Monday at six 7-Eleven stores in Southern California and authorities said they were seeking the same lone gunman in at least three of the crimes.

The string of violence occurred occurred within a timespan of about five hours on July 11, or 7/11, the day when the national 7-Eleven brand celebrates its anniversary. This is its 95th year and on Monday stores gave out free Slurpee drinks.

It wasn’t immediately clear to investigators what prompted the violence in the cities of Ontario, Upland, Riverside, Santa Ana, Brea and La Habra.

“I think the only person to answer that would be the suspect,” said Officer Ryan Railsback, a spokesperson for the Riverside Police Department.

But he said the date was no accident.

“There’s no way it can be a coincidence of it being 7-Eleven, July 11,” Railsback said.

7-Eleven Inc. issued a statement saying it was gathering information and working with police. “Our hearts are with the victims and their loved ones,” the statement said.

The first robbery happened at about midnight in Ontario, about 35 miles (56 kilometers) east of Los Angeles.

The masked man brandished a handgun at the store’s employee and demanded money, according to Ontario Cpl. Emily Hernandez. He did not fire any shots and the clerk was not injured. It was not immediately clear to investigators what, if anything, was stolen.

The second robbery happened about 45 minutes later in Upland, less than 5 miles (8 kilometers) away from the Ontario store.

The suspect approached the store clerk with a few items, “some drinks and things,” and brandished a semi-automatic handgun, Upland Sgt. Jake Kirk said. The man stole the items and about $400 to $500 in cash and fled. No shots were fired.

Surveillance photos, released by Upland and Brea police, show a masked man wearing a black sweatshirt with a hood over his head. The sweatshirt had white lettering with green leaves on the front.

While police in La Habra, Brea and Santa Ana have said they believe they are seeking the same suspect, officials in Ontario, Upland and Riverside have not yet made that determination though they said they were aware of the other crimes at 7-Eleven stores.

“It could potentially be the same person but we’re not confirming that at this time,” Kirk said.

About an hour after the Upland robbery and 25 miles (40 kilometers) away in Riverside, a gunman brandished a gun and robbed the 7-Eleven clerk, then turned the weapon on a customer, opened fire and fled, Railsback said. Police believe the clerk handed over cash from the register. The shooting victim was in grave condition.

“It doesn’t appear to be any reason that the suspect shot the customer,” Railsback said. “It sounds like the clerk gave him whatever he asked for.”

Railsback said criminals typically know that robberies at convenience stores rarely yield large amounts of money, especially during the overnight hours.

“If you go hit a liquor store or a 7-Eleven or a fast food place, you’re not going to get a lot of cash out of it,” he said. “It’s kind of odd that they would do this.”

Another shooting occurred around 3:20 a.m., about 24 miles (39 kilometers) away, in Santa Ana, authorities said.

Officers responding there reported gunfire and found a man dead in the 7-Eleven parking lot with a gunshot wound to his upper torso, according to Santa Ana Sgt. Maria Lopez.

“At this moment, we don’t believe he was an employee,” Lopez said of the victim. “We don’t really know yet what he was doing there in a parking lot, if he was a potential customer or just walking by.”

Surveillance video shows the suspect dropping items — believed to be the victim’s belongings — as he fled, Lopez said.

About 40 minutes later, a 7-Eleven employee in Brea was shot and killed, Brea Police Capt. Phil Rodriguez said.

Less than an hour later, officers in neighboring La Habra were sent to a reported robbery at a 7-Eleven. They discovered two gunshot victims around 4:55 a.m., according to Sgt. Sumner Bohee.

Authorities have not disclosed the victims’ conditions.

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

AP

FILE - Wisconsin Assembly Speaker Robin Vos talks to the media after Gov. Tony Evers addressed a jo...
Associated Press

Post-Roe differences surface in GOP over new abortion rules

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — When the U.S. Supreme Court repealed in June a woman’s constitutional right to an abortion, Wisconsin’s 1849 law that bans the procedure except when a mother’s life is at risk became newly relevant. Republicans in the Legislature blocked an attempt by Democratic Gov. Tony Evers to overturn the law. Yet there’s […]
21 hours ago
Sue Bird #10 of the Seattle Storm dribbles the ball against the Minnesota Lynx in the third quarter...
Associated Press

Seattle starts playoffs against Washington

The Seattle Storm host the Washington Mystics in game one of the first round of the WNBA playoffs.
21 hours ago
A cow crosses the Jordan River near Kibbutz Karkom in northern Israel on Saturday, July 30, 2022. S...
Associated Press

Mideast’s Jordan River: Rich in holiness, poor in water

ALONG THE JORDAN RIVER (AP) — Kristen Burckhartt felt overwhelmed. She needed time to reflect, to let it sink in that she had just briefly soaked her feet in the water where Jesus is said to have been baptized, in the Jordan River. “It’s very profound,” said the 53-year-old visitor from Indiana. “I have not […]
21 hours ago
Associated Press

Today in History: August 18, 19th Amendment is ratified

Today in History Today is Thursday, Aug. 18, the 230th day of 2022. There are 135 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Aug. 18, 1587, Virginia Dare became the first child of English parents to be born in present-day America, on what is now Roanoke Island in North Carolina. (However, the […]
21 hours ago
Mohammad Jewel and Arzu Begum have a meal in their home with their son Arman in the poor Mirpur are...
Associated Press

Climate Migration: Flooding forces Bangladesh family to flee

BHOLA, Bangladesh (AP) — When the Mehgna River swallowed Mohammad Jewel and Arzu Begum’s tin-roofed family home overnight in southern Bangladesh just over a year ago they had no choice but to leave their ancestral village. The couple fled the next morning with their four young boys to the capital, Dhaka, over a hundred kilometers […]
21 hours ago
Associated Press

Heavy rains pelt New Zealand, forcing hundreds to evacuate

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — Heavy rain continued to pelt New Zealand on Thursday, causing further disruptions and road closures from a storm that has already forced hundreds of people to evacuate their homes. Residents in the northern part of North Island found themselves isolated after landslides, fallen trees and floodwaters blocked highway access. The […]
21 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Work at Zum Services...

Seattle Public Schools announces three-year contract with Zum

Seattle Public Schools just announced a three-year contract with a brand-new company to the Pacific Northwest to assist with their student transportation: Zum.
Swedish Cyberknife 900x506...

June is Men’s Health Month: Here’s Why It’s Important To Speak About Your Health

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, men in the United States, on average, die five years earlier than women.
...

Anacortes – A Must Visit Summertime Destination

While Anacortes is certainly on the way to the San Juan Islands (SJI), it is not just a destination to get to the ferry… Anacortes is a destination in and of itself!
...

Ready for your 2022 Alaskan Adventure with Celebrity Cruises?

Celebrity Cruises SPONSORED — A round-trip Alaska cruise from Seattle is an amazing treat for you and a loved one. Not only are you able to see and explore some of the most incredible and visually appealing natural sights on the planet, but you’re also able to relax and re-energize while aboard a luxury cruise […]
...

Compassion International Is Determined to ‘Fill’ a Unique Type of Football ‘Stadium’

Compassion International SPONSORED — During this fall’s football season—and as the pandemic continues to impact the entire globe—one organization has been urging caring individuals to help it “fill” a unique type of “stadium” in order to make a lasting difference in the lives of many. Compassion International’s distinctive Fill the Stadium (FtS, fillthestadium.com) initiative provides […]
...

What are the Strongest, Greenest, Best Windows?

Lake Washington Windows & Doors SPONSORED — Fiberglass windows are an excellent choice for window replacement due to their fundamental strength and durability. There is no other type of window that lasts as long as fiberglass; so why go with anything else? Fiberglass windows are 8x stronger than vinyl, lower maintenance than wood, more thermally […]
String of California 7-Eleven shootings leave 2 dead, 3 hurt