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Five dead, seven arrested in violent San Francisco weekend

By Brent Begin, Bay City News Service

April 17, 2007

SAN FRANCISCO (BCN) - San Francisco police report that seven people have been arrested so far in a weekend of violence that left five dead and at least another four with bullet wounds.

The deaths include two Tenderloin District murders, two fatal hit-and-run fatalities and a suspicious death that occurred inside a Marina district beauty salon.

Inspectors believe a woman died Saturday inside Le Petit Salon at 1325 Chestnut St. She was the owner of the salon and she wasn't found until Sunday when her husband and brother-in-law went to the salon to check on her.

The woman, who has not been identified by the medical examiner's office, had puncture wounds on her body and the homicide detail is investigating the possibility of foul play, according to Sgt. Steve Mannina.

On Friday at 4:19 p.m. at Golden Gate Avenue and Hyde Street, seven suspects chased a 16-year-old boy into a nearby donut shop where he was gunned down, according to police.

The victim sustained a gunshot wound to his arm and abdomen.

Several hours later, a second shooting occurred in the Tenderloin District.

In that attack, police Sgt. Neville Gittens said that an as-yet-unknown person initiated the gunfire, which prompted a wheelchair-bound man to return shots. As a result of the ensuing shootout, 57-year-old Lena Allen was killed and three men and one woman were injured.

According to Gittens, 32-year-old Walter Simon, a Richmond resident, was booked on one count of homicide and three counts of assault with a deadly weapon. The attack took place in the 300 block of Ellis Street around 12:03 a.m.

Homicide investigators are looking into two more deaths that occurred with vehicles.

Police arrested an 18-year-old man early this morning on suspicion of killing a motorist while fleeing from an alleged burglary in San Francisco's Noe Valley.

Police said they were responding to a burglary at the Ritz Camera shop at 24th and Noe streets when officers spotted the suspect's vehicle.

Police said that Luis Lara, of San Francisco, sped off in his Oldsmobile sedan when he saw police. Lara then ran through a stop sign at Jersey and Church streets and crashed into a Ford Ranger pickup truck, killing the driver inside.

The victim, 57-year-old cab driver John Avery, died instantly. Lara also sustained injuries. Officers arrested him at San Francisco General Hospital.

He was booked on suspicion of one count of homicide and one count of burglary.

And on Sunday afternoon a San Francisco man was killed when the driver of a black car drove onto the sidewalk, struck the man and caused a foot injury to another pedestrian, according to police.

According to the San Francisco medical examiner's office, 41-year-old Lonnie Ross died around 6 p.m. due to his injuries. Ross and the driver of the vehicle involved had reportedly had an argument before the driver went onto the pavement and struck Ross, according to police.

The incident occurred around 2:30 p.m. at the intersection of Capitol Avenue and Lobos Street, near Ocean View Playground and Recreation Center.

According to police, the vehicle was described only as a black car and no one has been arrested in relation to the incident.

Police encourage anyone with information in any of these crimes to call the San Francisco homicide detail at (415) 553-1145 or the anonymous tip line at (415) 575-4444.

Copyright © 2007 by Bay City News, Inc. -- Republication, Rebroadcast or any other Reuse without the express written consent of Bay City News, Inc. is prohibited.




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