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More Details Emerge from Yesterday's Deadly Standoff in Winnetka; Victims' Names Released
Yesterday's violent and fatal standoff between a man inside his home on Welby Way in Winnetka and the LAPD's SWAT team left five people dead, including 51-year-old SWAT Officer Randal Simmons and the gunman himself.
Family and friends had unofficially identified the victims as being the Rivera family, and believed the gunman was 20-year-old Edwin, son of Gerardo ,54, who also was shot and killed. The coroner has officially confirmed those identities, as well as that of a third victim, 21-year-old Edgar Rivera, who is Edwin's brother. While the Rivera family has a third son, Andy, the coroner has not confirmed that he is the fourth victim from inside the house, as he "was not able to be identified because of the condition of his body."
The Rivera family were immigrants from El Salvador, and the patriarch ran a trucking company. This morning's LA Times adds that the "genesis of the violence was not immediately clear but appeared to involve a dispute between the shooter and his brothers and father. [...] Friends and relatives said there had been strains in the family involving the father's relationship with a girlfriend. The boys' mother died seven or eight years ago, family members said." The shooter "was a Reseda High School dropout."
The only survivor is thought to be Gerardo Rivera's girlfriend, who escaped the house when the tear gas was fired. The Los Angeles Police Protection League have publicly pledged their support of fallen Officer Simmons and wounded Officer James Veenstra, and the LAPD will fly their flags at half-mast today.
Photo by bookish in north park via Flickr