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Family pleads for witnesses to come forward in rush hour shooting death

A mother winced as her husband held her at the police station.  In the background were several televisions with surveillance footage showing the fatal shooting of the woman's son in rush hour traffic.

The video, taken from a nearby auto shop, shows a gunman exiting a dark-colored SUV at West Century Boulevard and South Vermont Avenue. The person then wades through traffic and shoots several rounds at Jarret Crump and another woman from above the hood of another car. The gunman then gets back into the SUV and drives away. Crump, 21, was taken to a hospital, where he died. The woman was treated for a graze wound. 

At a news conference held Sunday at the Los Angeles Police Department's 77th Street Community Police Station, detectives, along with Crump’s family members, pleaded for someone to come forward with information. So far, detectives have not heard from any of the people who witnessed the shooting during rush hour – 5:40 p.m. – on Nov. 25.

LAPD Det. Charles Geiger called the shooter’s actions “despicable” and encouraged anyone who knows even the simplest detail to come forward. 

“I am willing to go to the nth degree to get to the bottom of this,” he said.

Geiger said that detectives were analyzing all leads in the shooting that he said could be a “case of mistaken identity.” 

Crump, who worked as a custodian for the Los Angeles Unified School District, was not involved with gangs and served as a mentor in his neighborhood, according to detectives and family members.

The 2010 graduate of Crenshaw High School, where he ran track, was described as a Dallas Cowboys fan who was eager to advance within the school district.

In a tearful plea, his mother said she was puzzled at how a person could stand in front of traffic and shoot another. 

“Please come forward,” Dara Oliver said. “Jarret’s life shouldn’t have ended this way.” 

Crump’s grandmother had left a plate of food for him on the stove, “because he said he would be right back,” said Oliver's husband, Gregory Oliver. 

Gregory Oliver said that someone must know something about the shooting.

He scolded the killer:  “Shame on you, shame on you,” he said. Moments later, he held up two photos of Crump. “This is Jarret,” he said.

Anyone with information can call the LAPD’s Criminal Gang Homicide Division at (213) 485-1383. Those who wish to remain anonymous can call Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-8477.

-- Nicole Santa Cruz

Photo: Gregory Crump holds Dara Crump as surveillance footage is played for the media Sunday at  the LAPD's 77th Street Community Police Station. Credit: Nicole Santa Cruz, Los Angeles Times

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