The opinions expressed by contributors are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of RedState.com.
A Southern California man has confessed to shooting two Jewish men in Los Angeles, selecting them as targets due to their apparel. Police took Jamie Tran into custody on the afternoon of February 16th after separate incidents on February 15th and earlier on February 16th. In each instance, the shooting victim was a man wearing traditional Orthodox Jew apparel. Neither victim suffered a life-threatening injury.
According to a search warrant request to examine Tran’s car, both shootings were deliberate targeting based on religious affiliation. (Note: All of the following quotes come from the search warrant request.)
According to an interview of Victim-1 by the Los Angeles Police Department (“LAPD”), at approximately 9:45 a.m. on February 15, 2023, Victim-1 left religious services at a synagogue near the 1400 block of Shenandoah Street in the Pico-Robertson neighborhood of Los Angeles. Victim-1 was wearing a black jacket and a black head covering. Victim-1 walked toward his car, which was parked approximately one block away from the synagogue. As Victim-1 approached the passenger side of his car, he observed a 1980s to 1990s gray Honda Civic, later identified as the subject vehicle, drive up behind the driver’s side of his car and stop approximately one car length behind it. Victim-1 walked around his car to the driver’s side and observed the Honda move slowly towards him. As Victim-1 opened his front driver side door and turned his back to the Honda, he heard a loud bang and felt sudden pain on the right side of his back. Victim-1 saw the Honda drive away south on Shenandoah Street and realized he had been shot.
The second shooting was much like the first.
According to Victim-2, who was interviewed by the LAPD after the shooting, at approximately 8:00 a.m. on February 16, 2023, Victim-2 was leaving religious services at a synagogue near the 1600 block of South Bedford Street, in the Pico-Robertson neighborhood of Los Angeles, approximately one block away from where Victim-1 was shot the previous day. Like Victim-1, Victim-2 was dressed in a black jacket and a head covering.
Victim-2 approached the intersection of South Bedford Street and Pickford Street. While he was waiting to cross the street, Victim-2 saw a dark colored sedan drive eastbound on Pickford Street and stop beyond the limit line on Bedford Street. Victim-2 made eye contact with the driver, whose window was rolled down. As Victim-2 began to walk behind the sedan, he heard three loud shots. Victim-2 observed the sedan turn southbound on Bedford and speed away. Victim-2 then realized that his right arm was bleeding and that he had been shot.
Victim-2 only brief (sic) saw the suspect, whom he described as male, white, approximately 30 to 35 years old, wearing a black hooded sweatshirt, a black surgical mask, and black glasses.
As it turned out, the second victim was mistaken about the shooter’s race.
LAPD Officer Prescott responded to assist with the investigation. While responding, she saw a male Asian in his 30s, wearing a surgical mask and a black hoodie, driving a dark gray Honda Civic. Officer Prescott took a photograph of the car. Officer Prescott then reviewed the footage of the incident and recognized the driver of the Honda to be the man she had seen in the area and the vehicle to match the photograph of the car she took, which displayed the license plate of the Honda.
Tran was arrested later the same day.
On February 16, 2023, at approximately 5:45 p.m., the Cathedral City Police Department (“CCPD”) received a call about a man with a gun in the area of Cathedral City. The calling party reported hearing a shot fired and seeing a man with a firearm near a Honda Civic. As relayed to federal agents by the responding officers, upon arrival, CCPD located Tran standing next to the driver side door of the subject vehicle. On approaching the car, the officers saw in plain view on the driver side front seat an AK-style rifle and a .380-caliber handgun, consistent with the firearm believed to have been used in the shootings, based on shell casings left at the scene. Officers also found a spent casing consistent with having been discharged from an AK-style rifle.
Tran was advised of his Miranda rights and waived them, and in a recorded interview with LAPD and FBI agents, Tran admitted that he was responsible for shooting someone in the Los Angeles area earlier in the day. Tran stated that he had looked up a “kosher market” on Yelp and decided to shoot someone in the area of the market. Tran also acknowledged that he shot another victim in the Los Angeles area the previous day.
Tran said he knew the victims he shot were Jewish because of their “head gear.” Based on my training and experience, and my knowledge of the investigation, I believe his reference to “head gear” was a reference to a type of Jewish head covering. Tran asked whether the victims had died.
Tran said he was homeless and had been living out of the subject vehicle for the last 12 to 14 months. Tran stated that he obtained the firearms from someone he did not know in Arizona.
The search warrant request details how Tran had made anti-Semitic threats against former classmates and blamed the “Iranian Jew” or “Persian Jew” for COVID. Tran had also made a screenshot of a derogatory definition of “Persian Jew” and forwarded it to former classmates.
Since the shooter isn’t white and the victims aren’t members of a racial minority, the story will doubtless quickly disappear off the media’s radar screen, if it appears at all. We might get a few handwringing editorials, but after that, there will be naught but silence.
The wrong color skin pulling the trigger, and the bullet penetrating the wrong color skin, are of no use to The Narrative and therefore will be utterly ignored in favor of fluffy puffery about sloppy love. Satirist Tom Leher’s brilliant 1960s skewering of thought processes such as this comes to mind.