A husband was killed and his wife critically injured Friday when they were stabbed trying to stop a robbery at the 7-Eleven store in Valley Village where they both worked, according to police.
The double stabbing occurred at the convenience store's location near the intersection of Laurel Canyon and Chandler boulevards about 9:15 a.m., according to Officer Rosario Herrera of the Los Angeles Police Department's Media Relations Section.
Police initially responded to an attempted robbery call, she said.
A man in his 40s had entered the store and tried to alcohol and a hot dog when he was confronted by the female clerk, LAPD Lt. John Jenal told the newspaper.
The alleged thief “shanked her multiple times" before stabbing her husband, who had gone to check on his wife, Jenal said.
Police had not released the names of the victims, but they were identified by friends as Washi Ahmed and Lagrima "Paulina" Lopez.
The stabbings occurred outside the store, in the parking lot near the neighboring laundromat, LAPD Lt. Mike Kozak told KTLA.
"There's a significant amount of blood over there," he said during an interview at the scene.
A surveillance camera outside the laundromat captured the brutal crime on video.
The video showed Lopez running after the man closely followed by Ahmed. Lopez can be seen confronting the man and grabbing the beer and hot dog from his hands.
The man then pulled out a knife and stabbed Lopez repeatedly, the video showed.
As Ahmed tried to push the man off his wife, the assailant swung around and stabbed him in the neck.
Food items, blood stains and the woman's red 7-Eleven top all remained outside the laundromat hours after the violent attack, video showed.
Both victims were transported to a local hospital, where the husband was pronounced dead, according to Herrera and the Times. Lopez was listed in critical condition.
“We think this is extremely tragic incident for people to be injured over something as minor as just a few dollars worth of food," Kozak said.
A person identified by police as a "suspect" in the case is in custody, according to LAPD.
"The first officer on scene put out a crime broadcast based on witness statements," Kozak said. That led to him being apprehended a few blocks away when an officer "noticed the suspect as he was fleeing."
The unidentified man was arrested and expected to be booked on a murder charge, the Times reported.
Kelly Seidel, a regular customer at the 7-Eleven location, said he's observed people trying to steal from the store before.
"I’ve seen hoodlums come in and they try to go out with a couple twelve packs of beer, and I actually went after a guy down the sidewalk one day and got the two twelve packs of beer back," he told KTLA.
Seidel added he was "shocked" over the attack.
“I’m just at a loss for words," he said. “They’re the best people in the whole world, and I just can’t believe that something like this would happen.”
KTLA's Feven Kiflegiorgis and Jennifer Thang contributed to this story.