LAPD Arrests 16-Year-Old in Killing of Shoe Palace Employee Jayren Bradford

The LAPD has made an arrest in the fatal shooting of Shoe Place employee Jayren Bradford. (Courtesy: B. Higgs)

Los Angeles police have taken a 16-year-old male into custody in connection with Wednesday’s fatal shooting of Shoe Palace employee Jayren Bradford when a shoe raffle turned violent.

According to a news release from the LAPD, investigators located the teenage suspect Thursday afternoon in the city of South Gate — about seven miles southeast of downtown Los Angeles.

Police arrested the teen without incident. His name was not released because he is a juvenile.

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The arrest came one day after a suspect opened fire on 26-year-old Jayren Bradford outside the Shoe Palace store in the 7700 block of Melrose Avenue. The business is located in the Fairfax district of L.A., near the CBS Television City studios.

The trouble started when a group of men and women began arguing at Wednesday’s shoe raffle outside the store.

According to the LAPD, a co-worker telephoned Bradford and told him about the fight, prompting him to come to the store to assist his co-workers. When he arrived, he was confronted by the group of rowdy customers. The juvenile pulled out a gun and shot Bradford, the LAPD said. There were no other suspects involved in the shooting, according to police.

The crime happened in broad daylight. Cellphone video recorded of the shooting showed the moment the suspect opened fire on Bradford.

When officers arrived on the scene, they found the store employee in the street suffering from a gunshot wound. He was rushed to a nearby hospital, where he was pronounced deceased.

People in the neighborhood have continued to place flowers and candles outside the store as they pay their respects to Bradford. As previously reported, area residents told local news reporters crime has soared in the neighborhood over the past year.

The LAPD said investigators worked through the night looking for the gunman, who fled after the shooting. The department credited tips from the community and “extensive video” recovered from the area with helping them solve the case.

The department’s West Bureau Homicide team is handling the investigation. The case will be presented to the District Attorney for filing consideration on Monday, Aug. 16, 2021.