UPDATED 3:53 p.m. ET: The Los Angeles Police Department tweeted that the suspect, Shawn Laval Smith, is now in custody. “We would like to thank the public, the media and our partners at Pasadena PD for their support in apprehending the suspect.”
See original story below.
The LAPD took to Twitter on Tuesday night to release the identity of the suspect alleged to be responsible for the killing.
“31-year-old Shawn Laval Smith has been identified in connection with the murder of Brianna Kupfer, which occurred in the 300 block of North La Brea Avenue on January 13, 2022,” the department wrote. “He should be considered armed and dangerous. If seen do not approach, call 911.”
A $250,000 reward is being offered for information leading to the killer’s arrest and conviction, authorities said.
Kupfer, 24, was working alone last Thursday at Croft House in L.A.’s Hancock Park neighborhood when Smith allegedly walked into the store, stabbed her, and fled the scene.
During a press conference Tuesday afternoon, police revealed that Kupfer texted a friend shortly before she was killed.
“At 1:36 p.m. in the afternoon, Brianna was working in this store all by herself. She sent a text to a friend letting her know that there was someone inside the location that was giving her ‘a bad vibe,’” said Lt. John Radtke of the LAPD’s West Bureau Homicide division.
Radtke continued, “Regrettably, that person did not see the text immediately. And at 1:50 p.m., a citizen who was coming into the store, a customer, found Brianna lying on the ground lifeless, covered in blood.”