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[Updated] Suspect kills his vocational teacher at point-blank range; 'He could have killed the whole class,' a fellow student says


A student at a downtown L.A. vocational school pulled out a semiautomatic weapon and killed his instructor at point-blank range as others in the security-guard class looked on in horror, witnesses and police said.

The shooting occurred Wednesday afternoon during a class. The gunman briefly left his classroom at a downtown Los Angeles vocational school, then returned and immediately opened fire, authorities said. [Updated at 7 a.m.: The suspect has been identified as 22-year-old Law Thien Huynh.]

The victim was identified by friends as 44-year-old Roberto Herrera. He worked as a security guard and had been teaching a class on the subject at the Coast Career Institute for the last three years, LAPD Lt. Paul Vernon said.

Thirteen students were in the room when the suspect returned and began shooting, Vernon said. One other student suffered a slight injury.

After the shooting, the suspect walked out of the classroom, dropped the gun and left the building, authorities said. Witnesses gave emergency dispatchers a description of the suspect, who was spotted smoking a cigarette at Hill Street near 14th Place, Vernon said.

The man did not immediately comply with orders from police to surrender, Vernon said, choosing to continue to take drags from his cigarette. After a few minutes, he gave up without incident.

The motive of the shooting was unclear but officials believe the instructor was the intended target.

After the shooting, half a dozen students and an instructor stood outside the school building, which was cordoned off with police tape.

One man standing nearby who did not want to be identified described the victim as “one of the nicest guys ever. It was just a random act.” 

Witnesses later told KTLA News that the instruction was a caring person who did not have any issues with the alleged gunman.

"He could have killed the whole class," one student said.


Suspect briefly left security guard class before returning and opening fire

Shooting at L.A. vocational school occurred during security guard class, police say

Student kills instructor during security-guard class at downtown L.A. vocational school

-- Andrew Blankstein and Ann M. Simmons

Comments () | Archives (23)

Is this Baghdad? Kabul?
Close to 50 gun homicides per month is definitely a war zone LA. Where are the gun buy-backs?
"A people living in mortal terror contemplating when and where the next massacre of innocents will take place is not freedom"

Untolled thousands of people are walking, ticking time bombs in this country. Think before you act unkindly towards anyone; your unkindness could be the proverbial straw that breaks the camel's back.

Funny how none of the anti-union people are on this thread saying how easy teachers' jobs are.

how they turn on you...gunman likely just got out of the theater where today they brainwash the customers to kill

I loved Robert a lot he was a great instructor a role model and an amazing friend. he hated violence and everything it stood for. He was 44 and never once got into a fight in his entire life

Way to miss the point, Ed.

peace cookie, we have millions of people in LA. our homicide rates are at 1960s levels. its not all doom and gloom. get a grip.

like desire said, "Untold thousands of people are walking around ticking time bombs ..."

Poverty makes people unstable I guess.

so sad

Build the wall now!

I can't believe how much crime has risen in the past few months. Unbelivable, but we're living in the end of times. I can only hope that those who can save themselves, do it now. Accept Jesus Christ as your personal savior, and you'll have eternal life. My prayers goes out to the teacher's family. God bless you.

My deepest condolences to the family. This was an awful tragedy and no one deserves to die like this.


A bad association and why most points in debate dissolve into chaos.
This isn't even remotely close to the issue you wish to remonstrate.

"Desire" you are so correct.

Anyone notice that white people and asians can refuse to surrender to police orders for hours, even if they are armed, where as black people and mexicans are repeatedly shot seconds after a surrender order is given if they do not react fast enough, even unarmed and without suspicion?

I new the teacher that got shot and killed I am a student their.He was a wonderful person.I will miss him alot.I hope the person who killed him goes away for a long time.

"people die everyday." O.J. Simpson

"Funny how none of the anti-union people are on this thread saying how easy teachers' jobs are."

Who says the victim was a union member?

Down with unions.

@ Ed M. - of course there are no anti-union posters here saying how easy a teacher's job is. One, this story has nothing to do with that, and two, the anti-union people post about educational teachers, not security guard teachers.

@peacecookie - Seriously? Are you living in mortal terror?

@larry loser - So you are blaming movies, video games, etc.? Wow, you have been brainwashed to believe that is the cause. How would you explain all the other murderers prior to TV, movies, games, etc.?

This was a tragic event, and it is sad that it happened.

@ james mcgowan

obviously they arent teaching you grammer over there...

Welcome to the United States of Mexico

When will this country outlaw guns??? This is crazy. We live in supposedely the most civilized country in the world and yet we shoot each other like cowboys and indians.

The NRA has too much influence.

A man was killed while in a room full of promising security guards? This is what happens when the state cuts the UC/CSU budget and forces us to send our high school grads to Coast Career Institute.


Actually, Mr. McGowan's grammar is fine. His errors are in the realm of spelling and punctuation, just as yours are!

"obviously they arent teaching you grammer over there..."
Your short comment includes one capitalization error, one comma error, one apostrophe error, and one spelling error!

Not counting missing spaces after the periods which could just be due to typing quickly, Mr. McGowan made three spelling errors and one punctuation error.

I'm going to call it a draw!

I honestly think that teachers need 2 be more protect now !!!


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