WEST HOLLYWOOD—Artyom Gasparyan, 32, the suspect responsible for a dangerous crime spree throughout the Los Angeles area was arraigned in court on Tuesday, March 1. According to a press release from the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office, Gasparyan’s crime spree stretched across Los Angeles County, including the following cities: Burbank, Long Beach, West Hollywood and Panorama City that started in August 2015.
The first case filed for arrest warrant was in Van Nuys, LA081582, where the suspect was charged with attempted murder and assault with a deadly weapon that occurred on August 5, 2015.
The second case, BA442550 filed for warrant on December 29, 2015 charged him with one count each of attempted murder and assault with a firearm for a December 13, 2015, shooting. On March 1, 2016, Gasparyan was charged with over 2 dozen additional counts for crimes he allegedly committed from December 6, 2015 to January 4, 2016. New charges include one count of murder with special circumstance of an intentional shooting from a motor vehicle. Prosecutors will decide at a later date rather to seek the death penalty.
The suspect who was responsible for a crime spree that spanned more than a month throughout the Los Angeles region was hospitalized where he was listed in critical condition after being shot by authorities on January 4, 2016 at around 3 p.m. on the 5 freeway. Authorities from the Los Angeles Police Department apprehended Gasparyan, who was hiding out in the Sunland region by a task force of investigative entities who were searching to locate him.
When Gasparyan discovered he was being watched by police he fled in his silver Volkswagen at a high rate of speed. He entered the northbound 5 freeway and drove southbound against the “lawful flow of traffic,” noted the LAPD blog.
He struck a vehicle that resulted in injuries to a woman and her children before he ran on foot. Gasparyan was armed with a handgun and pointed the weapon at officers who fired shots at the suspect. Detectives involved in the shooting have been identified as Detective II Peter Miranda and Detective II Marcelo Raffi.
The woman and her children who were injured when the suspect’s vehicle collided with hers were treated for minor injuries and no injuries were reported of any officers involved in the incident. Authorities were able to recover Gasparyan’s handgun at the scene of the incident.
The LAPD had been searching for Gasparyan for his involvement in a string of crimes that started on December 6, 2015, that included robbery, carjacking, attempted murder and murder. The latest incident occurred on January 1, 2016, when the suspect was involved in a carjacking in Carson.
He was involved in an armed robbery that occurred on the 1000 block of West Hollywood’s North Kings Road on December 29, 2015. On December 9, Gasparyan opened fire on a 67-year-old man in the driveway of a home in the 1700 block of North Catalina Street, Burbank police confirmed. He later shot a 33-year-old gardener a few houses down. Both victims are expected to survive from the injuries they sustained.
On December 30, Gasparyan was allegedly involved in the shooting death of a 37-year-old man near Van Nuys Boulevard and Plummer Street.
Gasparyan did not commit the crimes alone; he was working along Daniel Ramirez who was accustomed by authorities in the 3300 block of Daisy Avenue in Long Beach on January 2, 2016. After a standoff with authorities, Ramirez had shot two people, stabbed another before shooting himself in the head. He was transported to a local hospital where Ramirez later died from injuries he inflicted on himself.
LAPD Police Chief Charlie Beck made Gasparyan’s arrest a top priority assigning over 100 detectives and officers to capture Gasparyan who was deemed a dangerous individual and to ensure the safety of the public. During a news conference, Police Chief Beck released the following statement: “He is a very dangerous man. I’ve had well over 100 detectives and several hundred line officers assigned specifically to capture him over the past week.”
The LAPD’s specialized Force Investigation Division (FID) responded to the January 4 incident where they started interviewing witnesses and collecting forensic and other evident. Their ongoing investigation will consist of interviews of additional witnesses, statements from the involved officers, collection and analysis of any video evidence, examination of the weapons, ballistics comparisons, analysis of clothing and DNA comparisons.
Once the investigation is completed, the Chief of Police and the Board of Police Commissioners will determine whether the uses of forced complied with the LAPD’s policies and procedures. The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Justice System Integrity Division will also conduct a detailed review of the incident to decide with officer’s actions violated California criminal statutes.
Gasparyan is also charged with 10 counts of attempted murder, seven counts of second-degree robbery, two counts of carjacking, two counts of fleeing police while driving recklessly, one count of hit and run driving resulting in injury and one count of possession of a firearm by a felon.
The case is still under investigation by the Los Angeles Police Department.