One Year Ago Today (September 6, 2021)…An investigation continued into the shooting deaths of a man and woman on a Long Beach street that may have started with a parking dispute.
“I was here to get my equipment and I saw there was, like, a fight, going on,” a vendor at a party at nearby Bembridge House told CBS2. “I had just walked through that same driveway where the man was killed, just like five minutes prior.”
The victims were identified as Long Beach residents Maricela Honorato, 44, and Juan Guizar-Gutierrez, 39, the Long Beach Police Department reported. Authorities described them as a couple.
“I went outside and I saw my stepdad, here on the floor, which was a traumatizing thing to see. I go over to my mom and she was still alive somewhat. I tried talking to her, telling her to hold on and that I loved her, but on the way to the hospital her heart gave out,” Honorato’s 21-year-old daughter Tania told CBS2. Honorato had three daughters.
“They shot my brother-in-law first and my sister came out screaming, saying, `Oh my God, they shot him, they shot him,’ and the person shot her too,” the victim’s sister, Maria Honorato, told CBS2. “How can somebody just take lives like that, two lives, innocent lives, over a parking spot?”
The couple were returning home from fishing and were followed by a vehicle with two men inside, honking and telling them to move, relatives told the Long Beach Post at a Sunday night vigil. Guizar-Gutierrez may have argued with the men, which escalated into a fight and the shooting.
The shooting occurred shortly before 7:50 p.m. Saturday in the 900 block of Park Circle, across from Drake Park, LBPD spokeswoman Arantxa Chavarria told City News Service.
A shrine to the couple grew at the shooting scene Sunday as people came to pay respects.
Police were called to the location regarding a fight call, but later said it was believed the shooing occurred outside, and it was not immediately known if the shooting was connected to the original fight call.
Officers found Guizar-Gutierrez on the sidewalk suffering from gunshot wounds to the upper body. Honorato was lying in the street, suffering from a gunshot to the upper body. Guizar-Gutierrez was pronounced dead at the scene. Paramedics rushed Honorato to an area hospital, where she later died from her injuries.
Further details, including suspect information, were not available, Chavarria said.
Long Beach police homicide detectives urged anyone with information regarding the shooting to call them at 562-570-7244 or Crime Stoppers at 800- 222-8477.