Suspect who stabbed multiple people in Long Beach shot by police
A harrowing scene unfolded in Long Beach, California on Tuesday, when a 31-year-old homeless man went on a violent stabbing rampage and was subsequently shot and wounded by police, as local outlet KTLA reports.
The incident began in the 4600 block of East 2nd Street in the upscale Livingston Park area, and a total of five victims were ultimately assaulted by the suspect.
As the Daily Mail noted, the trouble began just prior to noon, when a loud commotion broke out in the vicinity of Belmont Shore.
The outlet cited resident Ray Vannatta, who indicated that his wife drew his attention to a fracas taking place nearby, and that is when he saw what he described as a physical fight in which one assailant was punching another person as passersby screamed for help. After contacting law enforcement, Vannatta approached the trouble zone and realized that the attacker was wielding a knife.
During the course of the rampage, the suspect punched both a male and a female victim and then hit a father who had a young toddler in his arms. The attacker then went on to stab another male victim with a screwdriver near a local business establishment, according to the Mail.
In the end, as local CBS affiliate KCAL explained, two individuals suffered stab wounds and four others were physically assaulted, including the aforementioned 2-year-old, but none of the harm sustained was considered life-threatening.
When the suspect reached Second Street and Quincy Avenue, police apprehended him and instructed him to relinquish the screwdriver.
The man then attempted to enter a nearby residential property while still clutching the screwdriver, prompting police to open fire, landing one shot to the man's upper body.
Police indicated that the assailant was transported to a local hospital and that his injuries were also of a non-life-threatening nature.
According to investigators in Long Beach, it remains unclear what the suspect's motivation might have been, and neighbors in the area noted that they had seen him sleeping in the vicinity the night prior to the attack, according to KCAL.
Tuesday's events left area residents shaken, with Vannatta explaining afterward, “It hits close to home. It lets you know you should always be aware of your surroundings.”
Another witness to the alarming scene, Rick Blankenship, told KTLA, “I was just outside on my deck, and I was getting my dogs ready for a walk, and I just heard a lot of screaming.”
“Kids screaming, adults screaming. Initially, you'd hear screaming coming from the park, but this was pretty intense,” Blankenship added.
Neighborhood resident Brad Goshert lamented, “My kid, when she was younger, played in this park. It's a safe area, it's a safe park, but you know, stuff is happening everywhere.”
The Long Beach Police Department have not yet released the name of the suspect, who is reportedly still undergoing treatment at an area hospital.
Officials added that an investigation into the incident remains ongoing, but thus far, the attacks seem to have been random.
Given that all those wounded in the incident – including the attacker – are expected to survive, additional insights regarding motive may perhaps be gleaned as the probe continues.
In the end, it appears that those caught up in what appears to be a senseless spree of unprovoked violence are very fortunate that their injuries – at least the physical ones – were not far more serious.