Help us rise to the challenge of covering the coronavirus crisis. Our journalism is free for all to access. But we rely on your support. Donate today to power our journalists.

Here's your daily audio briefing (updated weekdays):

At Least 4 Dead, Including A Child, in Orange Shooting, Police Say

The entrance of the building at 202 W. Lincoln Ave., where a deadly shooting occurred on March 31, 2021. Google Maps

A shooting at a business in Orange has left at least four people dead -- including a child -- and one woman in critical condition, according to the Orange Police Department.

Officers responded to a call of shots fired at 202 W. Lincoln Ave. at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday. Police arrived as shots were being fired and located multiple victims at the scene.

Officers fired their weapons at the shooter. The suspect is in critical condition at a local hospital, but authorities could not confirm if it was a self-inflicted wound or was injured by officers.

No information was available on the business, the victims, the suspect or the motivation behind the fatal shooting.

The woman who was in critical condition was also taken to a local hospital. Authorities are not releasing names of the victims at the moment.

"It was a situation that was moving" to different areas, according to an official speaking at a press conference Wednesday night.

A reporter with Southern California New Group recorded this video near the scene early evening:

Multiple agencies are involved in the ongoing investigation. Officials are directing families to the Orange Police Department, and they're working to identify victims and notify families as quickly as possible.

Gov. Gavin Newsom said the shooting was "horrifying and heartbreaking."

Our hearts are with the families impacted by this terrible tragedy tonight," he posted to Twitter.

Producer Megan Nguyen contributed to this report.

Our news is free on LAist. To make sure you get our coverage: Sign up for our daily newsletters. To support our non-profit public service journalism: Donate Now.

Majority Of Angelenos Will Be Vaccinated By June, Health Officials Project

Registered Nurse Ebony Thomas (L) administers a Moderna Covid-19 vaccine to Cecilia Onwytalu, 89, at Kedren Community Health Center, in South Central Los Angeles. APU GOMES/AFP via Getty Images

The majority of Angelenos will be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by the end of June, Los Angeles County health officials project.

But that's if the county continues to see larger shipments of the vaccine each week.

L.A. County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer says, according to the latest estimates, if L.A. County receives on average about 576,000 doses a week, about 80% of residents over the age of 16 will be protected against the virus in the next 12 weeks.

"Reaching such a milestone is possible with increased allocations, and it would dramatically change the trajectory of the pandemic here in L.A. County," she says.

Those projections come as people 50 and older will be eligible for the vaccine starting tomorrow, and everyone over 16 on April 15.

Ferrer says the county is working to expand capacity at distribution sites, with the goal of administering about a million shots a week by the end of April. However, that plan will likely be impacted by Wednesday's news that 15 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine were ruined by an ingredient mix-up. Ferrer said the county was anticipating that about 20 percent of its doses over the next three months would come from Johnson & Johnson.


Our news is free on LAist. To make sure you get our coverage: Sign up for our daily newsletters. To support our non-profit public service journalism: Donate Now.

Democrat Christy Smith Will Challenge Rep. Mike Garcia Again In 2022

Christy Smith talks to a voter in Palmdale during a drive-thru meet and greet organized by her campaign. Oct. 3, 2020. (Libby Denkmann/LAist)

There will be a rematch in a key Southern California congressional race that was decided by a razor-thin margin last Fall.

Republican Mike Garcia defeated Democrat Christy Smith in November by just 333 votes to represent the 25th District, which stretches across north L.A. County into eastern Ventura County. Garcia won the seat last May when he defeated Smith in a special election to fill the vacancy left when former Democratic Representative Katie Hill resigned.

On Wednesday, Smith -- a former state Assemblymember -- announced she will again try to unseat Garcia in 2022. So far she’s highlighting his support for former President Donald Trump to make her case.

Garcia joined other Republicans who voted against certifying the outcome of the presidential election after rioters stormed the capitol on Jan. 6.

“He sided with insurrectionists and against the people of our community,” Smith said in a video declaring her candidacy.

In a statement, Garcia called Smith a “failed politician” whom voters already rejected twice -- and claimed she doesn’t share the values of families in the Santa Clarita, Simi and Antelope Valley district.

The 25th is likely to be a key race to decide the partisan balance of power in the House in 2022. Democrats currently hold an eight-seat majority in the chamber, with five outstanding vacancies.

Our news is free on LAist. To make sure you get our coverage: Sign up for our daily newsletters. To support our non-profit public service journalism: Donate Now.

Park Officials Say P-78, A Young Mountain Lion, Has Been Killed

P-78. (Courtesy National Park Service)

Sad news from the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area: another mountain lion in the ongoing study there has been killed, likely hit by a vehicle.

The cat, known as P-78, had also been exposed to several lethal toxins used to kill rodents. Biologists found the body along San Francisquito Creek in Valencia. P-78 is the 23rd mountain lion in the Santa Monica Mountains study to be killed since 2002.

The recreation area's Twitter account reported that the cat had been living in the eastern Santa Susana Mountains and would cross beneath the 5 Freeway along the Santa Clarita River.

According to park officials, P-78 was first "captured in the central portion of the Santa Monica Mountains on December 11, 2019." At that time, he weighed 84 lbs. The radio collar he was given at that first capture was replaced last November.

"At the time, he was in good physical condition and he had a full belly and had been feeding on a deer and raccoon kill. He weighed about 102 lbs."


Our news is free on LAist. To make sure you get our coverage: Sign up for our daily newsletters. To support our non-profit public service journalism: Donate Now.

UCLA Men's Basketball Team Lands In Final Four After An Upset Victory

Johnny Juzang of the UCLA Bruins celebrates with Jaylen Clark after defeating the Michigan Wolverines 51-49 in the 2021 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament on March 30, 2021. (Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

For the first time since 2008, the UCLA men's basketball team is headed to the Final Four, after a 51-49 upset win over the top-seeded Michigan Wolverines.

Sam Connon, a sports writer for the Daily Bruin, was in Indianapolis covering Tuesday night's game. He says while the arena seemed to contain more Michigan fans, Bruin supporters weren't drowned out:

"It got loud. UCLA fans were out there for real. They were chanting by the end of the game, all the classics, eight claps, the 'Let's go Bruins.' It was really interesting to hear that and be in the building for that after a year dominated by COVID, where all of the cheering was done by teammates on the bench," Connon says.

Jaylen Clark (#0), Johnny Juzang (#3) and Kenneth Nwuba (#14) of the UCLA Bruins celebrate after defeating the Michigan Wolverines 51-49 in the 2021 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament on March 30, 2021. (Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images)

The victory also led to celebrations closer to home. Hundreds of fans and students too kto the streets of Westwood on Tuesday night to celebrate the victory — and there wasn't a lot of social distancing. Television footage showed groups of of tightly packed people, not all of whom were wearing masks. Firefighters and police responded after some people in the crowd set couches and other items on fire, then set off fireworks. No reports of any arrests.

Most of the games the Bruins played in the regular season didn't have any fans in the stands, except for a couple that allowed friends and family. The NCAA allowed fan attendance up to 25% capacity for March Madness.

The 11th seeded Bruins will face the tournament's #1 team, the Gonzaga Bulldogs, on Saturday. The game starts at 5:34 p.m. Pacific Time and airs on CBS.

Our news is free on LAist. To make sure you get our coverage: Sign up for our daily newsletters. To support our non-profit public service journalism: Donate Now.

Morning Brief: Raising A Glass IRL, New Bail Rules, And Changing The Christian Music Game

A metro station entrance at sunset. (Chava Sanchez/LAist)

Good morning, L.A. It’s March 31.

No sooner did L.A. County enter the red tier, then on we move to the even less restrictive orange tier. Public health officials announced yesterday that local coronavirus numbers now meet requirements to open more businesses, and allow more (safe!) socializing.

Among the changes that L.A. could see as soon as next week are:

  • Restaurants could expand indoor dining to 50% capacity
  • Wineries could offer indoor service at 25%
  • Bars that don't serve food could reopen outdoors
  • Unlimited capacity for shoppers at retail stores
  • Churches, movie theaters, museums, zoos, and aquariums could expand attendance to 50% capacity
  • Gyms and fitness centers could expand to 25% capacity

Yesterday’s announcement came after L.A. spent only two weeks in the red tier. Under that change, many businesses could reopen at 25% capacity, including indoor dining at restaurants. Bars that don’t serve food weren’t allowed to welcome guests back.

That would change in the orange tier.

But some business owners aren’t quite ready to throw their doors open. "We will definitely be probably one of the last restaurants in L.A. city to open up for indoor dining," Celia Ward-Wallace, co-founder of South LA Cafe, recently told my colleague Elina Shatkin.

In order to qualify for the orange tier, counties in California must have a seven-day average of no more than one to 3.9 new cases per 100,000 residents, and a seven-day average positivity rate of 2% to 4.9%.

On Monday — the most recent day for which data is available — local public health officials reported a daily test positivity rate of 1.4%, 378 new cases of COVID-19, and seven new deaths (the low numbers may have been the result of weekend reporting delays).

Keep reading for more on what’s happening in L.A. today, and stay safe out there.

The Morning Brief newsletter is sent mornings Monday through Friday. Subscribe here.

What Else You Need To Know Today

Before You Go … This Queer Christian Musician Is Raising Holy Hell

Grace Baldridge, who records under the name Semler, plays guitar on their West Hollywood porch. (Chava Sanchez/LAist)

Grace Baldridge is a queer, gender non-conforming musician based in L.A., and their EP, Preacher's Kid, is making waves in an unusual place: the Christian music scene.

Comprised of acoustic folk songs that mine the rocky territory where personal faith and organized religion overlap, Preacher’s Kid placed number #1 on the iTunes Christian Album charts two days in a row, beating out top-performing artists. Now, this niche within a niche looks like an emerging genre.

Help Us Cover Your Community

  • Got something you’ve always wanted to know about Southern California and the people who call it home? Is there an issue you want us to cover? Ask us anything.
  • Have a tip about news on which we should dig deeper? Let us know.

Check for updates on these stories and more. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Never miss a Morning Brief. Subscribe to get these in your inbox.