Family and friends gathered to grieve at a Compton intersection Sunday to pay their respects to a 30-year old woman and mother of three who died in a crash early Saturday morning.
Deputies say they were in pursuit of another vehicle suspected of being involved in a shooting when the car ran a red light and slammed into a passing car, killing the driver, Stacey Garcia. The three people in the other vehicle also died in the crash.
Update Sun 2:40 p.m.: Friends, family mourn victim of Compton pursuit and crash
Stacey Garcia, 30, is believed to have been driving north on Wilmington Ave. when she was struck by another car at the intersection of Greenleaf Blvd. that was allegedly fleeing from deputies.
Kameelah Robinson has been friends with Garcia since they attended high school together. She said they've known each other for more than 10 years.
"She was innocent," Robinson said. "She had nothing to do with it."
Stacey Garcia would have turned 31 this coming Friday. She and her friends planned to go dancing this weekend to celebrate. Her friends said she was preparing to enroll in school after the holidays to train to be a phlebotomist. She was a stay-at-home mom of three girls, aged 7, 10, and 11 years old, according to her friends.
"We came out to be with her," Robinson said. "I came out today to check the candles we put out the other day."
Her uncle Ivan Garcia said he was watching the 10 o'clock news Friday night at his home in Fresno when he heard about the crash.
"I told my wife the innocent bystander will always get caught in a situation like this," he said. "And lo and behold, not even realizing it was going to be my niece — You never know."
Ivan Garcia says his sister, Stacey's mom, has been devastated and is still crying saying, "they took my daughter."
Saturday 12:20 p.m.: 4 dead after Compton pursuit and crash
Four people are dead after a sheriff's pursuit ended with two cars colliding in Compton.
Deputies say their pursuit began around 12:30 a.m. Saturday after they pulled over a red car. They say it matched the description of one from which shots had been fired earlier.
"The deputies stopped the vehicle and the car stopped along the curb and two deputies got out," Los Angeles County Sheriff's Sgt. Peter Ramirez told NBC4. "They began approaching the vehicle. When they got halfway or so, the car drove away. Deputies re-entered their car and began the pursuit because of the shootings."
Ramirez says the red car continued westbound on Greenleaf Boulevard. He says the pursuit lasted about a minute.
Officials say the suspect ran a red light and hit a gray car at the intersection of Wilmington Avenue. The driver and two passengers inside the red car died.
Firefighters cut open the roof of the gray car in an attempt to rescue the woman driving. They were unsuccessful.
Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly identified the driver killed in the gray car as a passenger in the vehicle allegedly fleeing law enforcement.