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Family of Hollywood shooting victim calls for stricter gun control

January 18, 2013 | 10:45 am

Empire club
Family and friends of a 19-year-old shot outside a popular Hollywood nightclub are calling for stricter gun control laws in the wake of his death.

Andre Lowe, of South Los Angeles, was fatally shot early Sunday outside the Empire Club on Cahuenga Boulevard, north of Hollywood Boulevard, authorities said.

A candlelight vigil is to be held Friday at 5:30 p.m. outside the club at 1716 North Cahuenga Blvd. Members of Lowe's family, joined by community activists and clergy, are expected to make a plea for tougher gun control laws.

"Gun control is a big issue given what happened back East, and L.A. is no stranger to random, senseless, violent crimes," said Jasmyne Cannick, a spokeswoman for the family. "Why is it so easy for people to have handguns in South L.A.?"

Robert Earl Thomas, 22, of Los Angeles, was arrested Tuesday in Las Vegas on suspicion of shooting Lowe, said Los Angeles Police Department spokesman Richard French. Thomas is believed to have fled the scene before police arrived and was arrested with the help of the FBI, officials said.

During the incident, another man was punched in the face and briefly hospitalized, and a woman was shot in the foot, Sgt. Mark Ro of the LAPD's Hollywood station said Thursday.

Lowe was a 2011 graduate of Etiwanda High School and was recently certified to be a security guard, Cannick said.

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-- Adolfo Flores and Andrew Blankstein

Photo: The scene outside the Empire Club in Hollywood in the wake of Sunday's fatal shooting. Credit: KTLA

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