SOUTH LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Police are searching for a suspect after a popular street vendor was gunned down at his late-night taco stand in South Los Angeles Friday night.
Police say 30-year-old Alvaro Mata-Rico, of Bell Gardens, was killed on East 51st Street and McKinley Avenue just after 11 p.m.READ MORE: Report: US Rep. Karen Bass To Run For LA Mayor
He had been selling tacos at the intersection for more than ten years — six days a week.
Detectives are hoping to find security cameras in the area to help them identify the suspects.
CBS2’s Greg Mills says the LAPD believes robbery was the motive and are looking for three Latinos.
Mills reported the location of the taco stand on Saturday become a makeshift memorial with candles, flowers, a soccer jersey and a beer.READ MORE: On First Day Pfizer's Booster Available For Eligible Adults In LA County, Few Have Turned Up For The Shot
“He makes good tacos, so everybody knows him in this area,” said friend Carlos Sierra who works nearby.
“I’m so sad,” said Sierra, “because it’s him. About his family, too.”
Mills also spoke to Reyna Escun who lives across the street from the taco stand. She says her family often bought food from the taco truck and that her aunt was in tears because her aunt had spoken to Mata-Rico just minutes before he was murdered.
“He said, ‘come by and buy some tacos,’ and she said ‘not today’ and a few minutes later…[he was dead],” Escun said.MORE NEWS: Man Allegedly Tried To Run Over Members Of A Fairfax Synagogue With His Car Wednesday
Mata-Rico was married and had a 2-year-old son.