Two people were stabbed, including a 9-year-old boy, at a Target store in downtown Los Angeles Tuesday evening in what police are describing as an “unprovoked” and “heinous act.”
The suspect, a 40-year-old man, was shot and killed by a security guard who confronted him, according to Los Angeles Police Department Chief Michael Moore.
The incident began around 6:40 p.m. when the suspect confronted the boy inside the store and repeatedly told the child “he was going to stab him and kill him,” Moore said.
The boy tried to move away but “the suspect, without any further provocation, suddenly attacked and stabbed this young child in the back,” the chief said at a news conference Tuesday night.
The man was armed with a 9-to-10-inch kitchen knife he took from the store, Moore said.
The suspect then moved down an aisle where he stabbed a 25-year-old woman in the chest, Moore said.
He then went to the front of the store and was confronted by an armed security officer who opened fire after the suspect moved toward him, still holding a knife, police said.
The suspect was shot in the stomach and was declared dead at a nearby hospital, Moore said. Police haven’t identified him.
The boy suffered a deep laceration to his left shoulder and was in critical but stable condition late Tuesday, the chief said. The woman was undergoing surgery to treat her stab wound, he added.
Police initially said three people had been stabbed, but Moore clarified during the news conference that two were stabbed and a third person was trampled while exiting the store, suffering facial bruising.
“The fact that you have an unprovoked attack on a child strikes all of us,” Moore said. “This isn’t something that’s acceptable in Los Angeles and by no means is anywhere near the norm.”
Officers were already in the area on another call and responded to the store quickly, rendering aid to the victims and suspect, the chief said. Investigators are now reviewing security footage from the store, he added.