Authorities Tuesday identified a 12-year-old boy who was killed in a brazen shooting that wounded a woman and injured a 9-year-old girl who was struck by a stray bullet at a Wilmington elementary school.
Meanwhile, police were continuing to search for the assailants who carried out the shooting around 4:45 p.m. Monday at Denni Street and Blinn Avenue near Wilmington Park Elementary School, according to the Los Angeles Police Department.
Alexander Alvarado, who lived in Wilmington and would have turned 13 later this month, died at a hospital following the shooting, according to the Los Angeles County coroner’s office.
According to police, the boy and a 30-year-old woman were seated inside a Dodge Durango SUV when they were approached by a group of people and one of them opened fire for unknown reasons.
Police did not say what the relationship was between the woman and the boy.
In addition to striking the woman and boy in the SUV, a stray bullet also struck a 9-year-old girl who was playing in the playground at Wilmington Park Elementary. According to the Daily Breeze, the school’s principal sent a message to parents Monday night saying the girl is a fourth-grader who was taking part in an after-school program when she was struck.
After the shooting, the woman in the SUV managed to drive a short distance away, stopping at North Eubank Avenue near East Anaheim Street, where she and the boy were later found by authorities, police said.
The boy was taken to a hospital, where he died of his wounds. The woman and the 9-year-old girl were taken to a hospital, treated for their wounds and were listed in stable condition.
“Gun violence has destroyed too many lives in this country and tonight it has terrorized another community,” said Los Angeles County Supervisor Janice Hahn, whose district includes Wilmington.
“I am praying for the family of this little boy and for the recovery of the little girl and young woman.”
Los Angeles City Councilman Joe Buscaino, who also represents Wilmington and is running for mayor, said “Our parks and playgrounds should be safe havens for families and today they became a parent’s worst nightmare. No one should be a victim of violence, especially children. Los Angeles must become a city better equipped to protect our most vulnerable, and a city better equipped to hold to account those who would commit such heinous acts.”
Classes were being held as usual at Wilmington Park Elementary on Tuesday, but in his Monday night message to parents, principal Luis Rivera said additional safety measures would be in place and counselors would be made available to students and staff, the Daily Breeze reported.
“Your child will be safe at school, which is my highest concern,” Rivera wrote.
Los Angeles Unified School District board member Tanya Ortiz Franklin and interim Superintendent Megan K. Reilly issued a joint statement Tuesday saying, “We continue to keep the families of the victims, and the entire school community at Wilmington Park Elementary School and Wilmington Middle School STEAM Magnet, in our thoughts and prayers as they begin healing from yesterday’s shooting. Our hearts are with those affected by this senseless tragedy that impacted our Los Angeles Unified family.”
They said anyone in need of counseling as a result of the shooting can call 310-354-3519.