Jan. 19, 2022
PASADENA, Calif. – Law enforcement authorities have arrested Shawn Laval Smith, 31, who was wanted in the brutal stabbing death of 24-year-old Brianna Kupfer, police confirmed Wednesday.
Smith was found and detained by officers of the Pasadena Police Department before noon in the area of Fair Oaks and Colorado Boulevard, according to the Los Angeles Police Department.
On Wednesday, police received a call from a citizen reporting that someone matching Smith’s description was on the corner of Colorado and Fair Oaks in Pasadena at 11:15 a.m., Pasadena police told KTLA.
Officers responded to the location, where they spotted Smith in the street, according to the news outlet.
He was arrested without incident and later transferred into LAPD custody, once authorities confirmed he was the suspect wanted in Kupfer’s murder.
Jan. 19, 2022
LOS ANGELES – The Los Angeles Police Department has identified the suspected killer of Brianna Kupfer, 24, a UCLA grad student stabbed to death at her furniture store job last week.
Shawn Laval Smith, 31, was named as a suspect in the case and should be considered armed and dangerous, according to LAPD.
A law enforcement source revealed to Fox News Digital that Smith has a rap sheet that spans both coasts, including in San Francisco and South Carolina.
Moments before Kupfer was brutally slaughtered, she texted a friend to say a man in the store was making her uncomfortable. Sadly, her perceptions were spot on.
“She sent a text to a friend letting her know that there was someone inside the location that was giving her a bad vibe,” LAPD Lt. John Radtke said of the Jan. 13 slaying. “Regrettably, that person did not see the text immediately.”
Anyone who sees Smith should call 911 and not approach, police said Tuesday evening.
Todd Kupfer, the victim’s father, said he did not want to politicize his daughter’s murder, but did acknowledge the role leaders play in the communities they serve, Fox News reported.
“I blame what’s endemic in our society right now, is that everybody seems to be oriented on giving back rights and bestowing favor on people that rob others of their rights,” Kupfer said.
“We don’t elect them because we think they’re great. We elect them because we think they can do great things, and it shouldn’t be about them,” he continued. “They should want to be in that role because they want to serve a community and the community needs love and support. People need to understand what should motivate them in their daily lives, and it’s all been lost.”
“It starts at home, and that’s really where we all need to improve. We just need to raise good families and good children, and we’re handing a world to these kids that we’ve damaged. And the only thing we can do is try to at least give them some love, and then it goes into the community,” the grieving father said.
Jan. 17, 2022
LOS ANGELES – A UCLA grad student was fatally stabbed by a random maniac while she was working as a consultant at a high-end furniture store in Los Angeles last Thursday, reports said.
Brianna Kupfer, 24, was identified as the murder victim. She was stabbed to death in broad daylight, around 1:50 p.m. Thursday, inside furniture business Croft House in the 300 block of North La Brea Avenue, KTLA reported.
About 20 minutes after the brutal slaying occurred, a customer walked into the store and found Kupfer dead on the floor.
An unknown male suspect knifed her before fleeing through the back door and calmly walking down an alley, Fox 11 reported, citing LAPD.
“There was one additional person in there: the suspect. No other witnesses or customers were in the store at the time,” LAPD Detective Herman Frettlohr told members of the media Thursday.
LAPD said in a Friday update, “Detectives have determined the suspect was not known to the victim and was a random walk in to the store.”
LAPD homicide detectives also provided a suspect description in the murder.
“The suspect is described as a male Black, unknown age, tall, thin, wearing a dark hoodie, sunglasses, a white N-95 mask, dark skinny jeans, dark shoes and carrying a dark back pack,” LAPD wrote in a press statement on Friday. “Based on evidence discovered by detectives, the suspect is believed to be homeless.”
The victim was studying architectural design and worked at the furniture store as a design consultant, the report said.
Her father told CBS Los Angeles that she was “loved by all.”
Dr. Jennifer Botelho, the owner of a nearby chiropractic office, told the local news outlet that the suspect walked into her businesses shortly before the homicide occurred.
“He came in and asked a couple of questions: ‘Do you do orthopedics here?’ What kind of care we provide, and then he left. So he was just here for a few minutes,” Botelho said.
Police continued searching for the suspect throughout the weekend, the New York Post reported.
“It’s terrifying. It’s horrible,” Botelho said of the random attack.
“She’s such a young girl. We feel so horrible for Brianna’s family, and hope we can catch this guy.”