An uncharacteristic uptick in high profile criminal incients has hit Culver City over the past several weeks, including multiple shooting deaths and the assault of a 17-year old jogger.
In the early morning hours of July 22, police were called to Media Park at Canfield Avenue and Venice Boulevard at the edge of Downtown Culver City by a report of a shooting.
When police arrived, they found two men, one of which was a victim with a gunshot wound lying near a trash can, alcohol bottles, and an abandoned bicycle.
The man, who was presumed to be homeless, died on the scene. He was later identified as Phillip Matthews, 46.
The second man was identified as the main suspect in the shooting and was arrested on the scene.
Investigators initially believe that the two men were involved in an altercation prior to the shooting, but the motive is still unknown.
Anyone with any information on this case is encouraged to call the LAPD.
A second shooting occured not even a week later, as police were called to the Mar Vista Gardens housing project just off the intersection of Inglewood Boulevard and Allin Street to respond to a shooting on July 28.
The shooting happened at about 10:40 p.m., and is currently being investigated as a gang-related shooting. The victim was transported to the hospital, but unfortunately succumbed to his injuries.
A suspect was seen driving away from the scene, but no suspect or vehicle descriptions were immediately available.
The incident was the second shooting at Mar Vista Gardens this year, as another man died in a shooting at the complex. However, the homicide rate in the city is notably low, with none occuring in the city from 2018-2020, according to the Culver City Police Department’s monthly reports.
The third and most recent of the high profile crimes was the assault of a 17 year old female jogger that occured on the Ballona Creek Bike Path on Friday.
Culver City Police were called to the scene on the path near National Boulevard and Wesley Street around 10 a.m. that day.
There, the victim explained to officers that she had been jogging on the bike path, when she noticed the suspect eyeing her, and began to feel uncomfortable
“The suspect seemed to be intently watching her, while one of his hands was in his pants, possibly committing a lewd act.,” the police release on the incident reads.
As the victim attempted to distance herself from the suspect, things took a violent turn.
“The victim became scared and attempted to run away when she was hit in the head with an unknown object.”
The jogger was hit hard enough to be rendered uncouncious for a brief moment. After regaining conciousness, the victim saw the suspect ride away north and onto National Boulevard.
After the incident, the victime was transported to the hospital, where she was treated for non-life threatening head injuries.
While the weapon used is still unknown, the suspect is descriped as a Hispanic male with short black hair and a thin build wearing a black sweatshirt and camoflage sweatpants. He was riding a black bike at the time of the incident.
Anyone with information is encouraged to call Culver City Police Department Officer Jason Sims at 310-253-6391 or the Watch Commander at 310-253-6202.