UPDATE: AUGUST 13 — Police have arrested a 16-year-old boy in connection with the fatal shooting of a shoe store employee who tried to break up a fight over a sneaker raffle on Melrose Avenue in the Fairfax district, KTLA reports.
The store was holding a raffle at around noon on Wednesday when a fight broke out between a group of men and women, police say. According to the Los Angeles Times, an employee called a co-worker, Jayren Bradford, to help handle the situation.
When Bradford, 26, arrived, a crowd of people confronted him. Then someone in the crowd pulled out a gun and shot Bradford once before fleeing in a sedan, heading north on Genesee Avenue. Bradford was transported to a local hospital, where he later died.
The juvenile, who was not named because of his age, was taken into custody at around 12:30 p.m. Thursday on State Street in South Gate, the Los Angeles Times reports, and was booked on suspicion of murder.
Detectives say they plan to present a murder case to county prosecutors next week. Video footage of the incident and numerous tips from witnesses helped them make an arrest.
AUGUST 12, 2021 — Police are searching for a gunman who fatally shot a store employee during a dispute Wednesday outside Shoe Palace on Melrose Avenue in the Fairfax district, according to the Los Angeles Police Department.
When officers arrived they discovered 26-year-old Jayren Bradford suffering from a gunshot wound, ABC 7 News reports. Bradford was taken to a local hospital where he later died.
Investigators and witnesses say the shooting happened after a dispute ensued over a raffle that Shoe Palace was holding for a pair of sneakers. Bradford was just arriving to work when he noticed a group of people arguing outside the store and attempted to intervene. Video footage taken by a witness shows a group of men swarming Bradford. Suddenly, one of the men pulls out a gun and fires a lone shot. The group then scatters.
“Jay[ren] came from his car and he confronted them saying, ‘What’s the problem? What’s the deal?,’” Bradford’s co-worker Keyshawn Williams tells KTLA. “Then everybody shifted their aggression towards Jay. And they were here with other friends, so they all surrounded him and that’s when he was shot.” The gunman fled the scene and remains on the run, police say.
Investigators are looking for a suspect described as a Latino man in his early 20s with short hair, KTLA reports. Police say the gunman was last seen getting into a sedan, possibly a Toyota Camry.
A sign in the store window indicates that the raffle was for a pair of Nike Dunk Low sneakers. Bradford lived down the street from the store and had only been working at Shoe Palace for a few months. He was also pursuing his dream of becoming a musician, Williams tells KTLA.
Police are asking anyone with information about the case to call the LAPD’s West Bureau homicide investigators at (213) 382-9470. During nonbusiness hours or on weekends, call (877) 527-3247. They’re also accepting anonymous tips via Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-8477 or submitted online at lacrimestoppers.org.
Stay on top of the latest in L.A. news, food, and culture. Sign up for our newsletters today.