DOWNEY -- Three people are confirmed dead after gunfire erupted at a Downey business and at a nearby residence today, and two other victims -- including a 13-year-old boy -- are in critical but stable condition, police said.

Witnesses and neighbors described a chaotic scene shortly after hearing gunfire about 11 a.m., including seeing a young boy screaming for help in the street. Other witnesses reported seeing a woman bleeding from her head, sitting on the sidewalk.

All of the victims are believed to be related, but the relationship is unknown, police said. Two children in the family Audio: Press conference - Downey shooting were kept home from school today at the residence, neighbors said.

The first shooting occurred near a business owned by one of the victims, United States Fire Protection, 8722 Cleta St., near Lakewood and Firestone boulevards. Two of those killed, a man and a woman, were reportedly shot there, police said at the scene.

A second shooting occurred shortly after the first at a duplex, located nearby at 8518 and 8520 Cleta St., where an adult woman was reportedly killed.

"We do not believe this was a random attack," said Lt. Dean Milligan of the Downey Police Department at a 4 p.m. press conference. "There was some specific reason (for the attack), but we don't know what it is at this point. ... I would hate to speculate on that." Milligan said there was "some sort of verbal exchange" at both locations before shots were fired.


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The first 911 call came in at 11:12 a.m. from the business and police arrived there within three minutes, Milligan said. Then the second 911 call was received at 11:17 a.m. from the residence and was made by the boy after he had been shot in the arm, Milligan said.

Sources told the Press-Telegram that the suspect kidnapped two of the victims at the business and took them to the residence the family's vehicle, after which two more family members were shot. Mulligan confirmed police were investigating this as a likely scenario.

Neighbors of the residence said the owner of U.S. Fire Protection lives there, though they didn't give his name. He was out of town, but his wife is the business's secretary, neighbors said.

The family-owned and operated business, which has eight to 10 employees, is across the street from the Coca Cola Downey Production and Sales Center in an industrial and warehouse area. The business sells and services fire extinguishers.

The two survivors of the shooting, the 13-year-old boy and a female, are critical but expected to survive, police said. They were transported to St. Francis Medical Center in Lynwood and Long Beach Memorial Medical Center.

Police are looking for a suspect, possibly driving a 2010 Black Chevy Camaro registered to one of the victims and associated with the business and home on Cleta Street, according to police. The license plate number is 6 LEA010.

The suspect was described by one of the victims as a black male who is 6 feet tall, about 230 pounds and age 30, police said. He is armed and should be considered dangerous, police said.

He was not related to the family and didn't work at the business, police said.

Officials said a suspect went into the business and opened fire, then went down the street to the home, which police said appeared to be a residence of either the business owner or relatives.

A man named Antonio Salinas is linked to the trust that owns the business, and he is listed as the owner of the home where the second shooting occurred, according to the DataQuick property records database. Police didn't release the identity of the victims, but said all have Hispanic surnames.

The roughly 3,500 square foot home, which has two units, is listed for sale at just under $500,000. Multiple loans have been taken out on the property, with a notice of default issued in 2011 and a second issued this year. The business is also listed as a "property in distress" by DataQuick.

Police have blocked Cleta Street north of Lakewood Boulevard. A crowd of about 30 to 40 people, including many members of the media, have gathered throughout the day at the corner of Lakewood Boulevard and Cleta Street.

One man, who didn't want to give his name, was waiting at the scene because he was concerned about his wife, who works at the business, he said.

Staff Writers Pamela Hale-Burns, Tracy Manzer, Karen Robes Meeks and Phil Zonkel contributed to this report.