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Monterey Park, USA:
The 72-year-old Asian immigrant, who killed 11 people before shooting himself as police attacked him, was once a regular at the California dance club where America’s latest shooting massacre took place.
Huu Can Tran used a semi-automatic handgun to spray bullets around the Star Ballroom Dance Studio in Monterey Park, a predominantly Asian city near Los Angeles.
Twenty minutes later he was caught and disarmed by a youth worker at another dance club before escaping.
As the small town tried to come to terms with the tragedy, which came as many in the Asian community celebrated the Lunar New Year, a picture of the suspect began to emerge.
Tran, whose name is typically Vietnamese, immigrated to the United States from China, according to a marriage certificate his ex-wife showed CNN.
The woman, who did not want to be named, told the network that she met Tran two decades ago at Star ballroom dance studio, where he was a regular guest.
The studio, whose website says it was founded in 1990, offers classes in all types of dance, from children’s ballet to Latin steps to belly dance.
Tran’s ex-wife says he introduced himself to her at the club, offering her free informal lessons.
The couple got married a little later, but the marriage did not last.
She said Tran, who sometimes worked as a truck driver, was not aggressive but could be impatient, especially if he felt he was being shown up, such as when she messed up a dance step.
Court records cited by CNN show the couple divorced in 2006.
A person who said he knew Tran well in the late 2000s and early 2010s told the broadcaster that he was a regular at the dance studio at the time.
The friend described how Tran drives from his home in San Gabriel, a town three miles (five kilometers) from Monterey Park, almost every night.
But Tran complained about the dance teachers, who he claimed would say “bad things about him,” the man told CNN, describing Tran as “hostile to a lot of people there.”
– “Something so terrible” –
He sold his home in San Gabriel in 2013.
The Los Angeles Times reported that Tran lived in a mobile home in Hemet, a city of 90,000 about 85 miles east of Los Angeles.
Detectives from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department searched his residence there at the Lakes at Hemet West Mobile Home Park, which bills itself as a “55+ active living community.”
A neighbor said the community was shocked.
“He would stop to pet your dog and everybody around him thought he was some quiet little guy,” Pat Roth told broadcaster KTLA.
“People I’ve spoken to are just amazed that he’s involved in this.
Hemet police said they had contact with Thorne this month.
“Tran visited the lobby of the Hemet Police Department on January 7 and 9, 2023, claiming past fraud, theft and poisoning charges involving his family in the Los Angeles area 10 to 20 years ago,” Hemet police said.
“Tran said he would return to the station with documentation regarding his allegations, but he never did.”
The Los Angeles Times said investigators are focusing on Tran’s previous interactions at the two dance studios and looking into whether jealousy over a relationship was the motive.
Tran shot himself on Sunday when officers approached the white van he was driving.
Los Angeles County Sheriff Robert Luna said investigators are looking into Tran’s mental health and criminal history.
“The investigation is ongoing,” he told reporters. “We want to know how something so terrible could happen.
(Except for the headline, this story was not edited by NDTV staff and was published by a syndicated channel.)
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