Arrests made in Monrovia triple shooting, more suspects sought

A man and woman were arrested on suspicion of murder for a gang-related shooting at a Monrovia bar that left one man dead and two others wounded, and the male suspect's parents were behind bars on charges they harbored and assisted their other son, still being sought in connection
with the killing, Los Angeles County sheriff's investigators announced Friday.

William LaCroix Jr., 34, and Erika Torres, 33, both of Monrovia, were apprehended by Monrovia police as they allegedly fled from the shooting at Gem City Grill in the 100 block of East Olive Avenue shortly after midnight on Dec. 2, Lt. Derrick Alfred said at a news conference at the sheriff's headquarters in downtown Los Angeles.

The two are charged with one count each of murder in the death of 43-year-old Michael Lowe of Monrovia, along with four counts each of attempted murder and two counts each of resisting an executive officer, Greg Risling of the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office said. The charges include gang allegations.

LaCroix's 31-year-old brother is still being sought in connection with the shooting, Alfred said.

Jeremiah Moses LaCroix -- a reputed gang member known by the moniker "Ciego" -- allegedly pulled out a gun and shot into the crowd after he and his older brother engaged in a verbal confrontation that escalated into a fight with several gang members inside the bar, according to sheriff's investigators.

Two rival gang members and an innocent patron not involved in the confrontation were struck by gunfire inside the bar, where about 30 to 40 people were gathered, according to the sheriff's department, which obtained video surveillance footage of the suspects entering the business.

Lowe died after being taken to a hospital. One of the victims struck by gunfire remains hospitalized in critical condition, while the bystander -- who had no role in the confrontation at the bar -- has been released from the hospital, sheriff's officials said.

The LaCroix brothers' parents, who live in Commerce, are accused of helping their younger son avoid apprehension after the shooting. William LaCroix Sr., 57, is charged with one count of being an accessory after the fact. Ana Guerrero, 53, is charged with two counts of being an accessory after the fact. "Her level of involvement was a little greater than the father's," Alfred said of Guerrero.

All four defendants have pleaded not guilty and remain jailed while awaiting their next appearance in a Pasadena courtroom Jan. 16, when a date is scheduled to be set for a hearing to determine if there is enough evidence to require them to stand trial.

Sheriff's Sgt. Richard Biddle said he believed it was "happenstance" that members of two rival gangs just happened to wind up in the same location. The sheriff's department has issued a "special bulletin" seeking the public's help in finding Jeremiah LaCroix, who is 6' tall, weighs about 180 pounds, has brown hair or a shaved head and multiple tattoos on his face, head and body. He is known to frequent the Monrovia, West Covina and Baldwin Park areas, and is believed to still be in the area, according to the sheriff's department.

Also being sought are Jacob Webb -- a 29-year-old Hispanic man who goes by the moniker "King Khash" accused of assisting Jeremiah LaCroix avoid apprehension after the shooting -- and the alleged getaway driver, a male Hispanic with the possible name "Alfonso" who drives a white Toyota Camry or a similar type of vehicle, according to the sheriff's department.

"This needs to be known that if these acts continue and more (members) of the public come out and continue to aid him, that they face the same consequences that his parents and Jacob Webb are going to face," Alfred said.

Authorities are also searching for the gun used in the shooting.

Anyone with information in the case was urged to call the Sheriff's Headquarters Bureau at (323) 890-5500 or call Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-TIPS to provide information anonymously.

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