DOWNEY (CBSLA.com) — Authorities say two people have died after being stabbed and shot outside a Downey restaurant.
Downey police said in a department statement that officers responded to the 7800 block of Florence Avenue following a report of a fight and stabbing.
Upon arriving on scene, they located the victims. They were taken to an area hospital where they were pronounced dead. Both had been stabbed and shot.
Investigators say the victims and a group of men were reportedly involved in an altercation when one of the suspects pulled out a handgun.
The incident occurred outside Tacos Mexico in Downey about 2 a.m. Sunday.
CBS2′s Jeff Nguyen spoke to Theresa Estrada, mother of 34-year-old Raymond Contreras, one of the victims. “He didn’t deserve to get killed like that. He’s not an animal. He’s a human being and why did they do this?,” she said.
Contreras was the father of two young children and a Little League baseball coach.
Both of the families say neither victim was in a gang.
The restaurant’s manager, Jose Cervantes, says he didn’t see the suspects but he could hear several shots go off from the sidewalk
The other victim has been identified as 31-year-old Isaac Perez.
His family says he tried to run across the street to their family-owned restaurant — George’s Restaurant and Bar — to get help.
Perez’s mother, Veronica, said, she saw her son in the ambulance. “And the police don’t let me in.”
The victims’ families say the men were picking up food at the Taco place because the staff was busy prepping for St. Patrick’s Day.
Police have gathered security video from businesses in the area.
“We strongly believe that the victims did not have any weapons in their possession. The suspects are the ones that had the weapons and then stabbed and later shot the victims,” said Lt. Mark McDaniel of the Downey Police department.
Both men were pronounced dead at a nearby hospital.
Police believe the suspects fled west on Florence Avenue. It’s not known at this time how many suspects are being sought.
Anyone with information about this case is asked to call Detective Lorraine Medina at (562) 904-2329 or Detective Robert Del Rio at (562) 904-22324.