Photos: Investigators at the scene the morning after the mass shooting
LA Mayor Karen Bass: “Mass shootings and gun violence are a plague”
Los Angeles Mayor Karen Bass called the news of the Monterey Park shooting “absolutely devastating.” Statement Sunday morning.
“Families deserve to celebrate the holidays in peace — mass shootings and gun violence are a plague in our communities,” Bass said.
“While the investigation determines whether these killings were motivated by Asian hatred, we remain united against all attempts to divide us. My heart goes out to Monterey Park and the families and friends of the lost.”
Los Angeles is eight miles west of Monterey Park.
Gun Violence Prevention Advocates Respond: “We Can’t Live Like This”
Groups and gun violence prevention advocates condemned the Monterey Park shooting — the 33rd mass shooting this year, according to the independent research group Gun Violence Archive — as the latest example of the scourge of gun violence in America.
Everytown for Gun Safety, the nation’s largest gun safety group founded by former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and fellow advocacy group Moms Demand Action, said in a tweet: “Our hearts go out to the victims, survivors, their loved ones and the wider community. What should have been a joyful celebration ended in gunfire. We don’t have to live and die like this. Everyone deserves to feel safe and not afraid of gun violence.”
Moms Demand Action, the grassroots group founded by attorney Shannon Watts, shared a similar sentiment expression.
“It is devastating to live in a country where we have to constantly wake up to this horrific news,” Kris Brown, president of the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence, said in a statement. “It’s even more outrageous that it’s become normal for people to be gunned down in the middle of a merry holiday celebration.”
March For Our Lives, the organization formed after the Parkland School shooting that killed 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, tweeted: “There are NO safe rooms! Not to celebrate. Not to be in community. Not to live as we are, free from fear deadliest mass shooting since Uvalde. WE CANNOT LIVE THIS.”
California Governor Newsom: “Our Hearts Sorrow”
California Gov. Gavin Newsom called the Monterey Park shooting “a horrifying and heartless act of gun violence” in a tweet Sunday morning.
“Monterey Park should have had a night of merry Lunar New Year celebrations,” Newsom wrote.
“Our hearts are saddened as we learn more of last night’s devastating acts. We are closely monitoring the situation,” he added.
Newsom’s office said in a tweet that the governor had been notified of the shooting and that state officials were working with local law enforcement.
“No one should be afraid to go to a celebration with their community,” the governor’s office tweeted. “Our thoughts are with the victims and all those affected.”
The timing of the mass shooting was “particularly painful,” says the local mayor
The mayor of the nearby city of Alhambra, about two miles south of Monterey Park, tweeted that given the city’s tall Asian-American and Pacific Islander population, it was “particularly painful” that the mass shooting took place during Lunar New Year celebrations.
“This is a time when residents should celebrate with family, friends and loved ones – without fear of gun violence,” Mayor Sasha Renée Pérez tweeted.
Asians make up about half of Alhambra’s estimated population of 81,200 people, according to Census Bureau data. Foreign-born people make up 47% of the population.
Monterey Park is a majority Asian immigrant town
Monterey Park is a predominantly Asian city, according to the Census Bureau.
Asians make up 65% of the city’s approximately 59,600 residents, and foreign-born people make up over half of the population, according to the Census Bureau. According to the Census Bureau, Hispanics/Latinos make up about 36% of the population, and whites make up about 20%.
The median household income in the city is $68,497.
The mass shooting occurred during a Lunar New Year celebration celebrated by Chinese and other Asian cultures. Authorities said it was too early to determine if the mass shooting was racially motivated.
President Biden briefed on mass shooting, press secretary says
President Biden was briefed on the Monterey Park mass shooting by Homeland Security Advisor Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall, Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre tweeted Sunday morning.
“He instructed them to ensure FBI full support to local authorities and to update him regularly today as more details emerge,” Jean-Pierre tweeted.
Police vehicles at the site of the mass shooting
Monterey Park cancels Lunar New Year Festival ‘for everyone’s safety’
The second day of a Lunar New Year festival has been canceled “as a precaution and for everyone’s safety,” the City of Monterey Park said in a statement Sunday.
“The city extends its condolences to the individuals, families and friends injured in this tragic incident,” the statement said.
“Although the incident did not occur at the 2023 Lunar New Year Festival, an active investigation is currently underway and the area near and around the festival is affected,” he added. “As a precaution and for everyone’s safety, the city regrets to announce the cancellation of the second day of the festival.”