SAN BERNARDINO – Police have developed a possible motive and possible unknown suspect in a Monday night shooting that took the life of a three-year-old girl while bullets also struck a pregnant woman and her three-year-old daughter.
On Tuesday morning, San Bernardino police released information about events that led to the attack that took place at 7:45 p.m.
Nila Franco Torrez, 3, was shot in the head and died a short time later at St. Bernardine Medical Center. La-Donna Howie, 22, was shot in the neck and jaw and her sister, Justine, was also shot in the head. Both are in critical but stable condition, said police.
Howie’s unborn child, five months along, “is in good condition,” said Lt. Gwendolyn Waters, the police information officer for San Bernardino PD.
The incident, which was not connected to three other shootings on Monday and early Tuesday, took place in the 1300 block of North D Street, six blocks north of the San Bernardino Police Department headquarters.
Interviews from numerous witnesses, said Waters, have led to a possible motive. Police are seeking a black male adult in his 20s, about six feet tall and somewhere between 160 and 170 pounds, said Waters.
“A subject from the victim’s residence,” she said, “was walking in the neighborhood earlier.” He saw a black male adult striking a female, intervening long enough for the female to escape. “That appears to be the motive,” said Waters, adding that the female who was attacked, “has not yet come forward.” Nor has anyone who witnessed the assault come forward, either, she said.
She said that at least two other males viewed the assault.
Waters said that a dozen people live at the residence where the shootings took place. Other than Howie, her sister and the three-year-old who died, “relationships are not clear” on the other residents of the home. When the shooting occurred, the victims were sitting on the front porch. Shell casings, said Waters, were found in the street.
On a night when other shootings took lives on city streets, Waters stressed that neither was related to the D Street incident. “They are absolutely in no way related to this one.”
She said the other shootings “are nothing unique to this city.” The D Street area is well known for gang and drug activity, said police.
Just before 6 p.m., police received a report of shots fired in the 100 block of Olive, east of Sierra Way. When officers arrived, they found a man had been shot as he drove through the area. Passengers in the car drove him to St. Bernardine Medical Center where he was stabilized and transferred to Loma Linda University Medical Center. Police said he is not expected to live.
Another shooting occurred at Foothill Blvd. and Meridian Ave. at 5:50 p.m. Police said a car drove up, a man got out and fired several shots at a man standing in front of a store. After the victim was struck once, the shooter got back into the car, occupied by others, and sped away.
That victim was taken to Arrowhead Regional Medical Center, police said, and was expected to recover. “He was shot in the upper body,” said Lt. David Harp on Monday night, describing his condition and “serious, but stable.”
Early on Tuesday morning, a woman was shot on Highland Ave., near Waterman.
Police did not identify any of the other victims.
The Press-Enterprise, http://www.pe.com/localnews/stories/PE_News_Local_D_nthreeshot13.3be907e.html