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Santa Clarita / Antelope Valley : 2 Slain by Gunman in Apartment Parking Lot


LANCASTER — An assailant killed a man sitting in a parked car early Tuesday, and then, ignoring her pleas for mercy, shot to death the woman driver who had attempted to flee on foot, authorities said.

Police do not know the motive in the slayings.

The victims, who police have not identified pending notification of relatives, were pronounced dead at the scene by paramedics at 12:02 a.m., said Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department spokeswoman Irma Becerra.

The killer remains at large, Becerra said.

The violence began about midnight in the parking lot of the Antelope Valley Apartments at 43454 32nd Street West, authorities said.

Witnesses told deputies that as the victims sat in a parked car, a man armed with a .44-caliber Magnum handgun approached the passenger side of the vehicle and through the car's rear passenger window shot the male victim in the head, Becerra said.

The woman, who had been sitting in the driver's seat, ran out of the car but tripped and fell about 15 feet away from the vehicle, Becerra said.

As the assailant approached the woman, his gun still drawn, she began pleading for her life, Becerra said.

"She was saying, 'Please don't shoot me, I have three kids,' " Becerra said.

The man fired three times, striking the woman in the head, the hand and the upper torso, Becerra said.

Witnesses told authorities that the man then turned and calmly walked 30 or 40 feet away, placed the pistol on the ground and kept walking, Becerra said.

Authorities recovered the gun, Becerra said.

The male victim was carrying several thousand dollars when he died, deputies said.

It is unknown whether either victim lived in the Antelope Valley Apartments or why the car in which they were shot was parked in the parking lot of the complex.

Timothy Williams is a staff writer and Sharon Moeser is a special correspondent.

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