1. Skip to navigation
  2. Skip to content
  3. Skip to secondary content

Latino Daily News

Sunday June 9, 2013

Santa Monica Shooter Claims 5th Victim and 2nd Member of Close-Knit Latino Family

Santa Monica Shooter Claims 5th Victim and 2nd Member of Close-Knit Latino Family

Photo: Facebook: Carlos Navarro Franco Family

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

The Santa Monica shooter, tentatively identified as John Zawahari, claimed a fifth victim and second member of the Navarro Franco family.  Marcela Franco, 26, was traveling in an SUV with her father, Carlos Navarro Franco, 68, when Zawahari shot at their car.

Navarro Franco was a groundskeeper at the Santa Monica College for 22-years.  He died instantly.  His daughter who was registered to take summer classes at the College died this morning at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center.  The dedicated father was driving his daughter to get her books while planning to meet his older daughter, Letitia at a doctor’s appointment.

This is yet another tragedy to hit the close-knit Latino family.  Their son Carlos died two years ago in a car accident.  Navarro Franco is survived by his wife Ramona and daughter Leticia.  Numerous other family members are connected to the Santa Monica College including college trustee Margaret Quiñones-Perez.

Zawahri is reported to be a former student of the College who has a history of mental illness.  It is believed his parents pending divorce triggered the shooting spree. 

Shortly before the Friday shootings started he killed his father Samir Zawahri and brother Chris Zawahri then burnt down the house they were in.  Saturday would have been the alleged shooters 24th birthday.

As the family house was burning down the shooter proceeded to shoot a woman as she drove by injuring her.  He then proceeded to hijack a car instructing the female driver to take him to the Santa Monica College campus.  En route he shot out the car randomly.

Once on campus he encountered the Franco’s Ford SUV. After shooting at the vehicle it crashed through a school brick wall. While on campus he continued shooting at whom ever crossed his path.  Authorities believe Zawahri had at least 1,300 rounds of ammunition on him.

The gunman was killed by police gunfire in the school library. The 13-minute shooting spree has left five dead and injured four others. 

Santa Monica College has created a fund honoring the deceased members of the Navarro Franco family.  They are also planning a memorial to honor the victims of the shooting.

Click here if you are interested in donating to the Carlos Franco Family Memorial Fund.