Monterey mass shooter may have received medical treatment

Monterey mass shooter Huu Can Tran, 72, ‘went to area hospital seeking medical treatment’ after slaughtering 10 people with illegal semi-automatic pistol and was found dead from single self-inflicted gunshot wound in van

  • Gunman, 72, fitting Tran’s description was seen in ER room after massacre 
  • Huu Can Tran taught lessons at Star Ballroom Studio where he killed 10 people
  • Sheriffs said the attacker wanted to kill more people in the rampage

The Monterey mass shooter who slaughtered 10 people and injured several others at a California dance hall may have gone to hospital after the bloody rampage.

Huu Can Tran, 72, was identified as the gunman who shot several people in a ballroom dance studio late Saturday during Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations in the predominantly Asian-American community, before he died in a police standoff.

The massacre at the Star Ballroom Dance Studio in Monterey Park, where Tran used to give dance lessons, left five women and five men dead and wounded another 10 people. Seven people remained hospitalized Sunday. 

Tran was also identified as the gunman who entered the Lai Lai Ballroom in nearby Alhambra just 20 to 30 minutes after the first shooting, but brave patrons fought him off and took his gun.

Local hospital staff said a man fitting Tran’s description was then spotted inside the emergency room with injuries that appeared to be sustained in a fight, law enforcement sources told CNN. 

The man waited for a period of time but then left without treatment, the staff said, who added that they recognized him from photos of the wanted gunman posted by the sheriff department’s Twitter account. 

Tran was at large until Sunday afternoon when police pulled him over in the van he used to flee the scene. After an hours-long standoff, Tran died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. 

Huu Can Tran, 72, may have went to the hospital Sunday after killing 10 people. Hospital workers said he appeared to have wounds from a fight. This photo was released earlier

Shortly after he was spotted at the hospital for treatment, Tran was pulled over by police. A SWAT team swarmed the van after a three-hour long standoff 

After an hours-long standoff, Tran died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound in the van he used to flee after his attempt at a second shooting that was thwarted by ‘hero’ patrons on Saturday

Tran was removed from the van after he died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound during standoff

Saturday, 10.22pm: Gunshots ring out in Star Ballroom Dance Studio

10.29pm: 911 responders receive a call about a shooting in Monterey Park

10.33pm: Police and rescue units start to arrive at the scene 

10.38pm: Officers say the studio has been ‘cleared’ and there are initially an estimated 10 unresponsive victims and two more in critical condition

10.39pm: Tran enters a second dance hall studio, the Lai Lai ballroom in Alhambra. His weapon is wrestled away from him

Sunday: Gunman reportedly enters a local hospital at an unspecified time with apparent fight injuries. He leaves ER before being treated

10.20am: Police locate white cargo van seen leaving scene of shooting 

11.15am: White van in shopping center parking lot is surrounded by police and SWAT

12.30pm: Sheriff’s office say the suspect has barricaded himself in the van 

1pm: Police enter the vehicle after Tran shot himself dead. Evidence linking him to the shootings is found in the vehicle 

Los Angeles County Sheriff Robert Luna identified Tran as the suspect on Sunday and confirmed that his motive is unknown. 

‘He intended to kill more people,’ Luna said in a news conference on Sunday night. ‘They saved lives,’ he said of the patrons. ‘This could’ve been much worse.’ 

He continued: ‘The weapon that we recovered at that second scene I am describing as a magazine-fed semiautomatic assault pistol. Not an assault rifle, but an assault pistol that had an extended large capacity magazine attached to it.’ 

The sheriff said the pistol Tran used appeared to be illegal in California, where state laws ban any magazine holding more than 10 rounds. 

Another gun, a handgun, was later found in the van where Tran was found dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Luna said that the van had different plates.

Authorities had been on the lookout for the white cargo van after witnesses reported seeing the suspect fleeing Alhambra. No one was killed at that scene. 

A short time after Tran was spotted at the hospital, police pulled over the van which led to the three-hour standoff.

By midday, police in tactical vehicles and bomb-squad trucks surrounded a white van in a parking lot 22 miles from Alhambra in Torrance, another majority Asian community.

It ended as police approached the vehicle and heard a gunshot. Tran was found dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Tran’s friends, who were close to the gunman from around the early 2010s, revealed to CNN after the shooting that he was ‘hostile to a lot of people’ at the studio where he taught and believed they said ‘evil things about him.’ 

Tran taught lessons at the Star Ballroom Dance Studio almost every night in the early 2000s when he lived five minutes away in the San Gabriel Valley.

His ex-wife also revealed to CNN that the studio is where she met Tran decades during a dance lesson and it wasn’t long until they tied the knot. 

But Tran’s appeared to fade quickly as the ex-wife, whose identity wasn’t revealed, claimed he lost interest in her and became easily angered when she messed up on choreography.

Tran, who is an immigrant from China, filed for divorce in 2005.

Investigators linked Tran to both shooting incidents that happened late Saturday night

A law enforcement official walks past Tran who is slumped over in the driver’s seat of the van

Investigators search a van that was linked to the mass shooting in Monterey Park

Tran was carrying what was described as a semi-automatic pistol with an extended magazine, and a second handgun was discovered in the van where he was found dead, officials said 

Aerial footage shows officials pulling unknown items from the white van after the standoff

Joe and Jill Biden pay tribute to massacre victims: Click here to read 

 

The Star Ballroom Dance Studio was Tran’s first stop before he made his way to the Lai Lai Ballroom in nearby Alhambra, but brave patrons thwarted his plan to carry out another shooting. 

Los Angeles County Sheriff Robert Luna said Tran’s motive is still unknown, but said it’s believed he had intended to kill more people. 

‘He intended to kill more people,’ Luna said in a news conference on Sunday night. ‘They saved lives,’ he said of the patrons. ‘This could’ve been much worse.’

The exact ages of the victims were not released, but Luna they all appeared to be over 50, 60, and beyond. Seven of the wounded people remained in the hospital, he said.

Horrifying pictures showed victims being stretched from the scene before being rushed to hospital as cops and ambulances swarmed the area.

Cops said throngs of terrified festival goers streamed out of the area ‘screaming’ as bullets continued to fly.

Tran was carrying what was described as a semi-automatic pistol with an extended magazine, and a second handgun was discovered in the van where he was found dead, Luna added. 

The pistol is designed to take 30-round magazines which allow for rapid fire without having to frequently change magazines. 

When asked if the gun was legal, Luna said: ‘I believe the weapon … is not legal to have here in the state of California.’

Luna said that he needed to consult the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives for further details on the weapon’s legality.

The shooting and manhunt sent a wave of fear through Asian American communities in the Los Angeles area and cast a shadow over Lunar New Year festivities around the country. Other cities sent extra officers to watch over the celebrations. 

Los Angeles County Sheriff Robert Luna identified Tran as the suspect on Sunday and confirmed that his motive is unknown. ‘He intended to kill more people,’ Luna said

Ten people were killed when a gunman opened fire in California during New Year celebrations

The first shooting happened on the 100 block of West Garvey Avenue, which is where the Star ballroom dance studio is based (pictured)

A second shooting, which cops were probing if it was related, happened at nearby Lai Lai Ballroom in Alhambra (pictured)

Click here to read the Lunar New Year massacre recap as it happened 

Monterey Park is a city of about 60,000 people on the eastern edge of Los Angeles and is composed mostly of Asian immigrants from China or first-generation Asian Americans.

The shooting happened in the heart of its downtown where red lanterns decorated the streets for the Lunar New Year festivities. A police car was parked near a large banner that proclaimed ‘Happy Year of the Rabbit!’ 

The celebration in Monterey Park is one of California’s largest. Two days of festivities, which have been attended by as many as 100,000 people in past years, were planned. But officials canceled Sunday’s events following the shooting.

Joe Biden tweeted he and his wife Jill were ‘praying for those killed and injured’ in the mass shooting, and noted he was closely monitoring the unfolding situation as cops continue searching for the shooter.

Shortly on the heels of Biden’s statement, Vice President Kamala Harris took to twitter Sunday afternoon to speak out against the ‘senseless act of gun violence,’ noting that she and her husband Doug were praying for the victims.

President Biden advised local residents to follow the direction of law enforcement as the search continues for the shooter. 

‘Jill and I are praying for those killed and injured in last night’s deadly mass shooting in Monterey Park,’ he wrote. 

‘I’m monitoring this situation closely as it develops, and urge the community to follow guidance from local officials and law enforcement in the hours ahead.’ 

Vice President Harris wrote that she and the president were supporting the local authorities as the investigation continued.

‘Overnight, yet another community was torn apart by a senseless act of gun violence,’ she wrote. ‘To the Monterey Park families impacted: Doug and I mourn with you—and pray for you.’

‘@POTUS and I will continue to provide full support to local authorities as we learn more.’

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