3 dead, 4 injured in California bowling alley shooting

Published January 5, 2019
A witness said the brawl, which lasted about five minutes, blocked the entrance of Gable House Bowl and devolved into “complete chaos.” —AFP
A witness said the brawl, which lasted about five minutes, blocked the entrance of Gable House Bowl and devolved into “complete chaos.” —AFP

A late-night fight at a coastal Los Angeles suburban bowling alley turned deadly on Friday night, killing three men and injuring four.

The Torrance Police Department responded to calls of “shots fired” at the Gable House Bowl, in Torrance, California, shortly before midnight.

Multiple victims were found with gunshot wounds inside Gable House Bowl, which is described on its website as a gaming venue that offers bowling, laser tag and an arcade.

Police said three men died at the scene and four male victims were injured, two of whom were transported to a hospital for unknown injuries. The other two injured sought their own medical attention.

Authorities have not released details about what led to the shooting, but witnesses said it stemmed from a fight between two large groups of people at the bowling alley.

Also read: How it happened: ‘I’m going to kill you,’ said Texas school gunman before opening fire

Wes Hamad, a 29-year-old Torrance resident, was at the bowling alley with his 13-year-old niece and cousin when he saw a “huge fight” break out. Hamad said the brawl, which lasted about five minutes, blocked the entrance of Gable House Bowl and devolved into “complete chaos.”

“I grabbed my niece and started running toward the far end of the bowling alley,” he said. “As we were running, we heard 15 shots.”

As he was leaving, Hamad said he saw a woman weeping over a man who was had multiple gunshot wounds in his head and neck.

Damone Thomas was in the karaoke section of Gable House Bowl, a regular stop for him and his friends after work on Fridays, when people ran in saying there was a shooting. The 30-year-old Los Angeles resident said his friend flipped over one of the tables to shield them as they heard gunshots.

Thomas said he didn't feel scared because he was “just trying to survive.” But when he was driving back home, he said he realised how traumatic the situation was and said he hasn't been able to fall asleep.

“Closing my eyes, all I can see is the women against the wall crying, not knowing what to do,” he said.

Both Thomas and Hamad said they had ever witnessed any violence there in the past, but Hamad said he had stopped going for a while because he heard someone with a gun was recently seen there.

“I definitely won't be going back anymore,” he added.

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