CANOGA PARK (CBSLA) — Detectives on Friday spent the day looking for clues and trying to determine why a Canoga Park man went on a crime spree killing four, wounding two and possibly robbing several others.
Police said Gerry Dean Zarazoga fatally shot his father, his brother, an ex-girlfriend and a man who is believed to be a stranger. Authorities said he also shot his mother and a man who worked with his ex.
Zaragoza is being held without bail.
CBS2/KCAL9’s Rachel Kim reported from North Hollywood where Zaragoza reportedly shot his ex — Susie Lepe — and her co-worker, whose name has not been released.
Lepe’s family held a candlelight vigil earlier Friday night but they asked us not to point the cameras in their direction. Lepe’s four children attended the memorial for their mother.
Early Friday, CBS2/KCAL9 spoke to Lepe’s brother, Cuco Lepe.
He told us the 45-year-old mother of four was a devoted and beloved mother as well as the sister to 11 siblings.
Her mother is overcome with grief.
“She’s an 82-year-old lady,” Cuco said, “she was crying and yelling yesterday, to her Lord, to give her back her baby. And she was asking me. Do whatever you have to do — bring back my baby.”
Lepe’s family told Kim that she briefly dated 26-year-old Zaragoza, the man who is now suspected of killing her at the gas station where she worked.
After she broke it off, he became obsessed.
Police said the violent spree began when Zaragoza killed his 56-year-old father, Carlos, and his 33-year-old brother, Carlos, Jr. He also shot his mother, Blanca, in the arm. She is expected to make a full recovery.
He then went to the North Hollywood gas station where Lepe worked and shot her along with a co-worker. Lepe was killed, the co-worker was reportedly left in critical condition. Zaragoza’s fourth, and final fatal victim, was a 50-something man riding the Orange line in Van Nuys.
Police believe that shooting was random. Zaragoza shot that man in the head, killing him.
The 12-hour manhunt came to an end when FBI agents spotted him walking down the sidewalk about seven miles away from the but stop.
When he wouldn’t cooperate with law enforcement, police used a Taser on Zaragoza to subdue him. He was transported to a hospital for observation.
“The pain that he has caused to my mother,” said Lepe’s brother, “and her children, and the sisters and brothers, will survive. But there will be no justice.”
LAPD detectives told Kim that Zaragoza had a problem with drugs and had problems with his family as a result.