A man has been tied to four separate robberies and shootings at Southern California 7-Eleven stores that happened early Monday, including two that were fatal. Police are investigating whether the man might have been involved in at least two other robberies that all took place at 7-Eleven stores.
A clerk was fatally shot during a robbery around 4:20 a.m. at a store on Lambert Road and North Brea Boulevard, Brea police said.
Responding officers found a male clerk with a gunshot wound who was pronounced dead at the scene.
Then, around 4:55 a.m., La Habra police officers responded to a report of a robbery at the 7-Eleven located at 381 East Whittier Blvd.
Police found two gunshot victims who were treated at the scene and transported to a hospital.
No suspects were located at the scene.
“We feel not 100% sure, but we feel confident that it is the same suspect,” Capt. Philip Rodriguez of the Brea Police Department said during a news conference later Monday morning.
Brea police then released surveillance images of the suspect involved in their incident.
Santa Ana police eventually confirmed that the man wanted in the other two incidents was involved in a third 7-Eleven shooting earlier Monday.
In that incident, a man was found shot to death at a store parking lot at 300 East 17th St. around 3:25 a.m.
“At this point, we don’t believe the suspect made it inside the store, the homicide occurred in the parking lot of the 7-Eleven,” Santa Ana police Sgt. Maria Lopez said.
Late Monday night, the Santa Ana Police Department identified the victim as 24-year-old Matthew Rule of Santa Ana.
In yet another incident, a 7-Eleven customer was shot during a robbery at a 7-Eleven in Riverside, police said.
That shooting occurred around 1:50 a.m. at the store along the 5100 block of La Sierra Avenue, Riverside police said.
The suspect brandished a gun, robbed the clerk and allegedly shot a customer on the way out.
The customer, described only as a man, was transported to a hospital in grave condition, Sgt. Ryan Railsback told KTLA.
The sergeant later stated that police believe it is the same man who was involved in the other incidents.
Anyone with information about the fatal shooting in Brea is asked to contact Detective Alfred Rodriguez at 714-671-4438.
Anyone with information about the incident in La Habra is asked to call the Police Department at 562-383-4300.
Police in Ontario also confirmed Monday evening that a 7-Eleven store on the 600 block of Vine Street was robbed at gunpoint just after midnight, although no shots were fired.
Officials from the Ontario Police Department said they were aware of the other robberies and investigators were working to determine if that crime was connected to the other robberies in nearby areas.
In a statement, 7-Eleven said they are working with authorities in their investigations.
“Our hearts are with the victims and their loved ones,” the company said.