A 17-year-old girl from Texas was shot and killed Wednesday night while sitting in her car in Marina del Rey, California, spurring a search for the gunman, police said.
The victim, identified by the coroner Thursday as Kristine Carman, was visiting Southern California from Texas, according to investigators.
Carman was one of three or four girls sitting in a Honda Element in the Villa Marina Marketplace Mall parking lot when a confrontation with a man ensued, the Los Angeles Police Department said. Officers responded around 8 p.m.
Carman was a passenger sitting in the back seat, according to police. She was shot in the head, and a man ran away from her minivan before driving off in a dark-colored SUV.
The Honda was near a deli when the shooting occurred, but somehow ended up near a Panda Express restaurant, police said.
"You have dolphins and seals waking you up when they're barking in the morning," said Eric Kind, a resident of the seaside community. "It's not the place that you'd think something like that would happen."
The mall is located in a well-lit area at Maxwell Avenue and Glencoe Avenue.
"We haven't had any murders over here in many, many years," said Lt. John Radke of the LAPD. "So it's very rare to have a murder at this exact location."
LAPD was looking for a man wearing a blue beanie and gray sweatshirt. Police believe he drove toward the 90 Freeway. Police were also trying to track down any surveillance footage from surrounding businesses.
A fundraiser for Carman has been established. Anyone wishing to donate can do so here.
Corey Arvin and Robert Kovacik contributed this report.