LA community gathers at vigil for 24-year-old slain at furniture store

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(LOS ANGELES) — Los Angeles community members gathered for a vigil outside the furniture store where a 24-year-old employee was killed in the middle of the afternoon.

Brianna Kupfer was attacked with a knife while she worked alone at the store on Jan. 13. Kupfer had texted a friend that afternoon saying someone in the store was giving her a “bad vibe,” Los Angeles Police Department Lt. John Radke said at a Tuesday news conference.

Community members brought flowers, candles and posters to a Thursday vigil for the slain 24-year-old, who, when not working at the Croft House furniture store, was taking design courses through UCLA Extension, a continuing education program.

“I’m the parent of a girl two years younger than her. It’s shocking to me that this happened here or anywhere in our city,” resident Sherry Gonzalez told Los Angeles ABC station KABC.

The suspect, 31-year-old Shawn Laval Smith, was apprehended in Pasadena on Wednesday. Police said the crime appeared to be random.

Smith was charged Friday afternoon with murder.

“Those who show no compassion for human life will face serious consequences,” LA District Attorney George Gascón said in a statement. “The murder of Brianna Kupfer has left Los Angeles County devastated and my office is reaching out to her family to provide any services they may need.”

 

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