Two people were killed and five injured before dawn on Wednesday after gunfire erupted at a nightclub and nearby gas station in a Los Angeles suburb before the violence spread to a hospital where one of the victims died, authorities said.
About 200 people were in a parking lot leaving Stinger’s Bar & Nightclub in San Bernardino, about 59 miles (95 km) east of Los Angeles, when shots rang out, killing one man and injuring five others, two of them critically, according to San Bernardino police Lieutenant Rich Lawhead.
Another man who is believed to have fled the scene by car was fatally shot later at a nearby gas station in what was being treated as a related incident, Lawhead said.
Police did not have a clear understanding of the motive for the violence, but Lawhead said it is believed to be gang related.
The parking lot outside the club was littered with dozens of shell casings and articles of clothing and the pavement was covered in skid marks apparently left by those who raced away in cars, according to photos and video from the scene.
“We just don’t know what happened,” Eugene Jones, 31, who hosted the so-called “Taco Tuesday” event that preceded the shooting, told the San Bernardino Sun. “Everything was ending, the lights were on, I was telling people to get home safe when we heard the gunshots.”
Later in the morning, the violence spilled over to Loma Linda University Medical Center, where about 75 people waiting just outside the entrance to the emergency room became upset after being informed that one of the victims had died, according to San Bernardino County sheriff’s spokeswoman Cindy Bachman.
The group got unruly when a hospital staff person asked them to leave, with one person throwing coffee at a detective, she said. The crowd dispersed as police and sheriff’s deputies arrived, she added.
The identities of the victims have not yet been released and there were no immediate reports of any arrests.
(Editing by Cynthia Johnston and Alan Crosby)