Nancy Magaña was sitting in her vehicle with her boyfriend and 5-year-old son when she was fatally shot, and authorities are now investigating if the killing is connected to a string of other murders.
Grainy surveillance footage shows a white car pulling up in the same parking lot that the the California middle-school teacher’s vehicle was in on an early August morning last year. An unidentified gunman emerges from the vehicle, walks over to Magaña, and fires into the 24-year-old mother’s vehicle, killing her, according to KABC-TV.
The video recording from late last summer has been released by San Bernardino police in the hopes the footage could solve a string of five murders, which officials believe are connected and gang-related. Authorities believe that four other shootings, including the killing of an infant girl, which all occurred a short distance from one another in the California city’s west end, are linked through physical evidence.
"They're very close to each other, a couple miles apart," San Bernardino Police Sgt. Al Tello told the local television station. "It's the west side of our city, in a high gang area."
Magaña was shot at the intersection of 30th and Flores Streets in San Bernardino. Her Aug. 17, 2019 killing kicked off the string of possibly linked shootings, police said. The shootings span over a six-month period, with the most recent occurring in late January.
"No words were exchanged between Magaña and (the suspects in) that vehicle," Tello also stated. "Someone walked up from that car and opened fire on the driver's side striking her.
The police sergeant said Magaña was killed through “no fault of her own.”
“She was just sitting there with her boyfriend," he added.
Police repeatedly referred to the area where she was killed as a hotspot for gang activity.
"She gave everything she had to her son, and for this senseless act to take her away is heartbreaking," Nancy’s sister Maria Magaña told KTLA . "If you knew her you would be here mourning with us.”
On Sept. 14, the second shooting unfolded on Cajon Boulevard when 21-year-old Detrell Page and his toddler were shot at while driving, striking the young father in the back of the head, according to KTLA. Page survived the gun blast but his 2-year-old was killed in a collision resulting from the shooting.
The third shooting occurred on Jan. 19, 2020 when law enforcement discovered a person who had been shot, was badly hurt, and lying on a roadway close to the intersection of Meridian Avenue and Spruce Street, police said. The victim later died at a hospital. Police said that another individual was also grazed by gunfire in the incident, but was treated by medical staff, and released.
Two more bullet-ridden victims were found near the corner of Hanford Street and Grand Avenue on Jan. 21, KABC-TV reported. The victims were pronounced dead on the scene.
Authorities, who believe there are a handful of witnesses to the shootings, encouraged anyone with information related to the string of gun violence to approach police.
"We think that just a few people coming forward can help us solve quite a few of these incidents," San Bernardino Police Chief Eric McBride told KABC. "There are people who saw these homicides, saw these shootings, saw what happened. We need those people to come forward."
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