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Gunman Kills 3 in S.F. Hotel

A fourth victim is in critical condition. The assailant is found dead an hour after the attack, which apparently grew out of an argument.

June 29, 2003|Imran Vittachi | Special to The Times

SAN FRANCISCO — A tenant in a residential hotel in the rough Tenderloin District opened fire in the hotel lobby Saturday, killing three other residents and critically injuring a fourth, police said.

The suspected gunman fled, but was found dead in his room at the Dalt Hotel about an hour after the 5 p.m. shooting. Police said it appeared John Bravard, 53, had shot himself in the head.

Two victims died at the scene, and the third died at a local hospital. Authorities did not release the victims' names Saturday but said they were men who appeared to be in their 30s and 40s.

Officer Maria Oropeza said police believe Bravard got into an argument with at least one other hotel resident earlier in the afternoon and left. He returned with a handgun, began shooting and fled. Police closed surrounding streets in the district and searched for about an hour before finding his body. Oropeza said police were investigating whether Bravard had a criminal record or a history of mental illness.

The injured man remained in critical condition Saturday night at San Francisco General Hospital with a gunshot wound to the neck.

Trina Johnson, 38, who said she has worked the reception desk at the residential hotel for about three months, said she was wary of Bravard.

"When I looked at him, I had these bad vibes about him," said Johnson, who was off work Saturday but came to the hotel after hearing about the shooting. She said she knew at least one of the victims.

The Dalt, a seven-story brick structure, is in a dilapidated neighborhood near the Civic Center. Above the entrance is a broken sign for a dry-cleaning business.

Single-room-occupancy hotels, halfway houses for recovering addicts and adult bookstores and movie theaters line the street with many boarded-up buildings.

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