The unidentified child was one of four victims who died during the mass shooting in Orange, California.
During Wednesday's mass shooting at an office complex situated in Orange, California, a child tragically died in his mother's arms. Although the kid's identity remains unknown, authorities revealed on Thursday that the 9-year-old was the son of a woman who was an employee at the company which had been targeted by the shooter. Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer said that the young boy "died in his mother's arms" despite her efforts to save him, according to PEOPLE. Apparently, the mother was also wounded during the shooting as she attempted to shield her son from the bullets. She was left in critical condition following this but authorities say that her condition has since stabilized at the hospital.
The incident that claimed the boy's life and three others unfolded in the evening around 5:30 pm when police received multiple calls about shots being fired at the 200 block of West Lincoln Avenue, reports The New York Times. The offices of Unified Homes, a complex with multiple buildings, had been targetted. According to the business' website, United Homes is a real estate and mobile home dealer. When officers arrived at the scene, they were unable to enter the complex initially as the suspect had used bicycle cable locks to seal the courtyard on two sides. The suspect then began firing shots at the officers who retaliated by firing their weapon outside the gates, revealed Lieutenant Amat.
Police named the suspect in the mass shooting at a California business complex and said he knew the victims. Four people, including a 9-year-old, were killed. https://t.co/pFHTcOiulF— CNN Breaking News (@cnnbrk) April 1, 2021
Cops used bolt cutters to ultimately force their way into the premises and found the bodies of victims in multiple buildings. The first victims to be discovered by police upon entry were the mother-son duo. The two were reportedly present in the courtyard. The suspect was also found in the courtyard in a wounded state and officers immediately apprehended him. While he is currently in a critical but stable state in the hospital, it's unclear if his wounds were caused by bullets shot at him by cops or if they were self-inflicted. Thankfully, no officers were injured in the process.
Dropped by to thank the officers who were on the scene last night during the mass shooting in Orange.— Gavin Newsom (@GavinNewsom) April 2, 2021
California’s hearts are with all those that were impacted by this terrible tragedy. pic.twitter.com/r5bhYUp1S4
While searching the scene of the crime, cops recovered a semiautomatic handgun and found a backpack containing handcuffs, pepper spray, and ammunition. The suspect is believed to been living out of a hotel room in Anaheim and that he arrived at the location using a rental car, according to Lieutenant Amat. The suspect was later identified as 44-year-old Aminadab Gaxiola Gonzalez of Fullerton.
Describing his manic attack as a "horrific rampage," Spitzer said that Gonzalez would be eligible for the death penalty due to the horrendous nature of the alleged crime if convicted. It remains unclear whether the man has been charged for his alleged actions or not. "It is a horrible, horrible tragedy that Mr. Gonzalez made a decision to use deadly force to deal with issues he was dealing with, apparently, in his life," said Spitzer.
The shooting in Orange, California, tonight is the 9th mass shooting in 2021 and the 6th mass shooting this month.— Shannon Watts (@shannonrwatts) April 1, 2021
We are the only high income country where “getting back to normal” after a pandemic means shootings resume in places where people should be safe.
📸 Jae C. Hong/AP pic.twitter.com/NA3BAfKIr4
Authorities are yet to disclose the specific nature of the relationships between the suspect and his victims. During a press conference, Orange police Lieutenant Jennifer Amat did reveal that "this was not a random act of violence. We believe everyone knew each other, whether through a business or personal relationship." According to The New York Times, Amat added, "This appears to be an isolated incident." Officers did not provide any further details about the other victims, two women and a man, as their next of kin had not been notified.