LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — A man is dead Tuesday after being shot at the Westfield Century City mall during an argument that started in an upscale Mexican restaurant.
Police say the shooting happened at about 10:20 p.m. Monday in the valley parking area. The shooting followed an argument between two women at Javier’s that escalated to a fight between two separate groups.
The fight continued outside between two men, one of whom pulled out a gun and began firing, chasing another man down the sidewalk and through a parking area. The 28-year-old man tried to run away and eventually collapsed with multiple gunshot wounds.
The man was taken to a hospital and underwent surgery, but did not survive. His name has not been released pending notification of his family.
“It’s definitely shocking,” said Westside resident Ali Deoca. “It’s not a dive bar or anything like that where you would expect to see that sort of thing.”
The gunman got away on foot, and police still have Santa Monica Boulevard alongside the mall blocked off Tuesday morning. Police say they are still searching for the gunman, but investigators don’t believe there is any further threat to the public.
“It’s an isolated incident. It may involve gangs; I don’t believe the gangs are from this immediate area,” LAPD Lt. John Radtke said. “There’s no reason for me to think there’s going to be further violence in this mall.”
Javier’s released a statement Tuesday saying, “As Javier’s guests may be aware from the news, a tragic shooting took place in the Westfield Century City Mall parking area on Monday evening, January 20, 2020. LAPD officer Lt. John Radke has issued a statement that he believes this is an isolated incident, and that there is no reason to believe there will be any further violence at the mall.”
“Javier’s has been in business for 25 years, and prides itself as a safe environment for guests in all its locations. Javier’s has and will cooperate with local law enforcement, the mall’s owner, and Westfield Mall security to make sure that the Century City mall and its many restaurants, outdoor and parking areas remain a safe place for all mall visitors.”
The gunman was described as a black man between 25 and 30 years old, about 5-foot-7, 160 pounds, wearing a black hooded sweatshirt and blue jeans. He was last seen running away on the eastern stairway to Santa Monica Boulevard.
Police say the restaurant was full of people at the time of the argument, and investigators are looking for witnesses and checking nearby stores for surveillance video.
Anyone with information about the shooting can call LAPD’s West Bureau homicide at (213) 382-9470.