Two graduate students were fatally shot early Wednesday morning in a car in front of a residence on Raymond Avenue near 27th Street.
The Los Angeles Police Department responded to the scene in the 2700 block of Raymond Avenue shortly after 1 a.m., where one female, 23-year-old Ying Wu, and one male, 23-year-old Ming Qu, were found shot.
Wu and Qu were transported to California Hospital Medical Center in Downtown Los Angeles where they were pronounced dead.
Officers found Wu inside a late-model BMW 3-Series and Qu outside of the vehicle.
At some point after being shot, Qu fled from the car toward a nearby house to seek help, LAPD Cdr. Andrew Smith said.
LAPD said the suspect at large is male. No other details or descriptions have been provided about the suspect.
There are no yellow-jacketed security ambassadors patrolling the area near the crime scene.
Dept. of Public Safety Capt. David Carlisle said two video patrol cameras and two license plate recognition cameras are stationed in the area, but not directly on Raymond Avenue. DPS turned over all camera footage to LAPD.
“We are saddened and outraged at this horrific act,” Denzil Suite, associate vice president for student affairs, said in a statement. “I encourage us to pull together as a community for support and comfort during this difficult time.”
Wu and Qu were both studying electrical engineering at the Viterbi School of Engineering.
“As a dean and professor but also as a Viterbi parent, this news hits me very deeply,” Viterbi Dean Yannis C. Yortsos said in a statement. “On behalf of the school, I want to express my strongest sympathies to the families of the victims, all our students, faculty and staff and the university community. I know that the entire Viterbi community, around the world, has been shaken by the news.”
Michael L. Jackson, vice president for student affairs, and Todd Dickey, senior vice president of administration, released a joint statement to the USC community Wednesday.
“Our community is saddened and outraged by this callous and meaningless act, Jackson and Dickey said. “Our hearts and prayers go out to the victims’ families and friends and all who knew them at USC.”
Mourners placed flowers in front of Wu’s house on Raymond Avenue throughout the day and gathered for a candlelight vigil Wednesday night at Tommy Trojan.
In response to the murders, Carlisle said more officers will patrol the area where the shooting occurred. Per DPS Chief Carey Drayton’s orders, a “public safety kiosk” was placed at the intersection of 27th Street and Raymond Avenue, where officers will be stationed and surveillance footage will be taken.
Suite said the university has contacted Wu and Qu’s families and offered full resources should they wish to travel to Los Angeles.
“They’ll have to make some determinations whether that is feasible for them, but we’ve let them know that whatever they want to do, we will help them in that endeavor,” Suite said.
Those with information on the shooting are asked to call Southwest Area Homicide investigators at (213) 485-2417.