CANOGA PARK — A man who fled to the San Fernando Valley Monday after allegedly killing his estranged wife in Long Beach was shot and killed by LAPD officers outside Best Buy, sending customers and employees scurrying for cover inside the giant electronics store.
The 11 a.m. shooting in front of the Canoga Park electronics store ended a manhunt that began three hours earlier in Long Beach, where the the suspect allegedly shot his wife in the head in a parking lot after abducting her from a nearby apartment.
The couple’s 2-year-old son was found in the apartment with a family member.
Police said the suspect, identified as Donovan Morris and in his 30s, drove to Woodland Hills to meet with an uncle. The uncle phoned authorities after Morris told him he had “killed his family,” said LAPD Lt. Dave Storaker.
Morris then left the Woodland Hills home in the 6600 block of Glade Avenue and made his way to the Best Buy at Victory Boulevard and Owensmouth Avenue.
It is unclear why Morris went to the store or what exactly happened when he got there. Some reports said Morris held a gun to his head, while witnesses at the scene said he engaged police in a brief firefight in front of the entrance to the store.
Shopper Tim Coyle, 33, of Winnetka said he was in the store getting his daughter’s laptop fixed when he heard police shouting outside.
"All of a sudden they (police) yelled `Shut the doors! Shut the doors!’ Then I hear gunshots," Coyle said, adding a number of customers dove to the floor.
Coyle, who described himself as a gun aficionado, said he heard multiple gunshots from the suspect’s weapon as well as shots from police officers.
He said the customers were taken into a security room inside the building for safety.
Multiple shell casings and a handgun could be seen on the ground where the suspect’s body had lain and bullet holes peppered a wall of the building. The busy stretch of Victory boulevard was roped off to drivers and pedestrians for nearly three hours as officers scoured the crime scene.
The store remained closed late Monday, as police interviewed witnesses and investigated the scene.
While authorities did not officially release the name of the suspect or the victim, citing notification of next of kin, police sources identified Morris as the suspect.
Los Angeles Superior Court records show that Donovan Morris and his wife, identified as Ivy Bodkins, were in the process of a divorce. Bodkins had started the process to end the marriage in January, citing dissolution of marriage, according to records. She filed for a temporary restraining order on April 7, alleging domestic violence.