A California woman was killed after an argument over a pride flag hanging outside her clothing store, lawmakers said
A Southern California clothing store owner was shot and killed after an argument about a rainbow pride flag Police said they are suspended out of action, as the LGBTQ+ community continues to struggle Violence and threats across America.
Laura Ann “Lori” Carlton, 66, died of a gunshot wound Friday evening at her store, Mag.Pi, in Cedar Glen, about an 80-mile drive east of Los Angeles, the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Office said.
Authorities said the suspect, Travis Ikeguchi, 27, was also killed following a shootout with deputies after the suspect fled the initial shooting.
Sheriff Shannon Dickos said Ikeguchi tore down the flag and shouted “many homophobic slurs” towards Carlton, and Ikeguchi shot Carlton when she confronted him. The mayor’s office said in a press release that Ikeguchi also made “several disparaging remarks” about the flag before Carlton was shot.
Authorities said no lawmakers were hurt in their confrontation with Ikeguchi.
The attack comes as LGBTQ people and their supporters have faced down Threats and acts of violence Along with “an unprecedented wave of anti-LGBTQ legislation in 2023,” according to the Human Rights Campaign.
LGBTQ Americans are living in an emergency. said the group’s president, Kelly Robinson, in June when it was announced national emergency to the community.
Carlton, who has not been identified as LGBTQ+, has advocated for “everyone in society,” the organization Lake Arrowhead LGBTQ+ he said in a statement. “She will really be lost.”
California Governor Gavin Newsom said in a statement Share on social media about shooting. “This disgusting hatred has no place in California.”
Authorities said the suspect posted anti-LGBTQ+ messages on social media
On Monday, as deputies tried to arrest Ikeguchi, Decos said, the suspect fired at San Bernardino County sheriff’s deputies, hitting several of their cars.
Decos said the deputies returned fire, shooting Ikeguchi, who died at the scene. The sheriff said the gun found at the location where Ikeguchi died was the same gun used to shoot Carlton.
DeCos said investigators are still investigating the motive for Carlton’s death.
Ikeguchi, who lived in Cedar Glen, had social media accounts containing anti-LGBTQ and anti-law enforcement material, police officials said at a news conference late Monday.
The platforms used by the suspect included Twitter, which had recently been rebranded as X; Beside Misseda popular platform among right-wing extremists.
Dicus said Monday that authorities were aware of the suspect’s X account that had a burning Pride flag as a pole attached to it.
An X account that appears to belong to Ikeguchi contained several anti-LGBTQ posts, according to a review by CNN.
Another post was critical of abortion and same-sex marriage, describing both as a “war” against family values.
In a post critical of law enforcement, the user accused officers of using “sociopathic schemes.”
‘She was very brave,’ says Carlton’s daughter.
Carlton’s daughter, Ari Carlton, told CNN’s Anderson Cooper on Monday that the store’s flag had been torn down several times before, but always replaced with a larger one.
“It was very brave, and any negative reaction I just worked through,” said Ari Carlton. She said her mother was not afraid to stand up to anyone.
Ari Carlton said Laurie Carlton was about to replace the existing flag because it had aged – the family found a package containing a replacement on their doorstep Friday night after the shooting.
“She told my dad she asked it because the one that was hanging had faded naturally from the sun,” said Ari Carlton.
Countless people have reached out to the family to share what her mother and the flag mean to them, Ari Carlton said, including a family friend who said the flag inspired this person several weeks ago to come out to her family.
Her daughter, Lori Carlton, said she was honest and compassionate. When heavy snow made travel difficult in San Bernardino County and made some residents anxious about accessing supplies, Laurie Carlton and her husband distributed food next to their store, the daughter said.
“I want to make sure … that we focus only on who she was as a person — just beautiful inside and out — and that we all progress by preaching love, acceptance, and equality in her honor,” said Ari Carlton.
Hollywood director Paul Feig praised Laurie Carlton as an amazing friend.
“We are all devastated for her husband, Burt, her family, and the LGBTQ+ community, to whom Laurie was a true ally,” Feig wrote in one of his posts. Instagram mail.
He said, “This intolerance must end.” “Anyone who uses hateful language against the LGBTQ+ community must realize that their words matter, and that their words can inspire violence against innocent people in love. Let us all continue to move forward with tolerance and love.”
Carlton a store It sells shoes, clothes, jewelry, vintage items and gifts.
The fashion career began early in Carlton’s life working in her family’s clothing store and attending ArtCenter College of Design, a private art university in Pasadena, California, according to the store’s website.
Carlton and her husband have been married for 28 years and share a “blend family of nine children,” according to Store location. The couple’s interests included travel, architecture, design, fine art, food, and fashion, the site says.
CNN’s Jason Hanna contributed to this report.
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