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Pacoima man dies when assailant pulls gun during fistfight

February 14, 2010 | 10:35 pm

A Pacoima man died of gunshot wounds from a confrontation that began as a fistfight near a bar in North Hollywood.

Carlos Martinez, 18, was struggling with two men when one pulled out a gun and began firing.

“It was a fistfight that escalated,” said Officer Karen Rayner of the Los Angeles Police Department.

More than one bullet struck Martinez. A companion took him to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead, Rayner said.

Details about what happened were sketchy, but Rayner said Martinez had just left a bar about 1:15 a.m. Sunday in the 11700 block of Vanowen Street.

A sharp exchange between Martinez and the two men preceded the violence, witnesses told the police.

The suspects, believed to be 17  to 23 years old, left the scene.
Police have asked anyone with information to contact Det. Steve Castro at (818) 623-4045 or 1-877-LAPD-24-7.

-- Howard Blume