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Shooting at Cypress Club Leaves 1 Dead, 4 Injured

Gunfire erupts with 200 people inside. Police seek three suspects, call incident gang-related.

March 14, 2004|Claire Luna | Times Staff Writer

One woman was killed and four people were wounded at a Cypress club early Saturday morning in a shooting that police said was gang-related.

Cypress police did not release the names of the victims, all in their 20s. They were seeking three suspects.

The woman who was killed was taken to Long Beach Memorial Medical Center after being shot in the torso at the Fifth Wave Cafe, a restaurant and club frequented by many young Korean Americans.

About 200 people were at the Fifth Wave when the shooting occurred about 1:30 a.m. inside the cafe. Patrons ran outside when the firing began, said Police Sgt. James Olson. The killers fled west in a car and were believed to be members of Los Angeles County gangs, police said.

A second victim was in critical condition at UCI Medical Center in Orange with a stomach wound, and a third was in stable condition at the Long Beach hospital with arm and shoulder injuries.

Two others were taken to Western Medical Center-Santa Ana with gunshot wounds and were released Saturday.

Some of the victims are also believed to be gang members, Olson said.

Fifth Wave is in a windowless, two-story, white concrete building in a strip mall near the border of Orange and Los Angeles counties and Hawaiian Gardens.

Hang Le, who manages a liquor store next to Fifth Wave, said the club opened four years ago and was frequently crowded. Despite an occasional parking-lot fistfight, Fifth Wave patrons were usually friendly, Le said.

"I'm not worried about this happening again," she said. "People there always come to the store to buy cigarettes and they are so nice. I can't believe something like this would happen there."

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