Councilman Tom LaBonge and Los Angeles Police Department detectives held a press conference Tuesday morning to announce a leading to the arrest of the shooter who killed Raul Lopez.
The 38-year-old Hollywood resident and father of five was slain on the job while at Hoagies and Wings in Sherman Oaks on June 29.
“We all feel for your family,” LaBonge said after greeting the family. “The City of Los Angeles is working very hard, but we need the community to help. Someone knows these individuals.”
According to the LAPD, Lopez was shot in the chest outside the restaurant following a disturbance with five young men. The men were arguing about how long the food was taking and after awhile, Lopez tried to escort them outside, according to a report published on KPCC.
, and lead homicide detective James Nuttall said Tuesday that the men, all African-American, were driving a newer model black Cadillac Escalade on 26-inch chrome rims.
“We haven’t exhausted every angle, but we felt it was in the best interest of the family and the LAPD to pursue this angle,” Nuttall said of the choice to offer a substantial monetary reward.
There were witnesses at the scene of the crime, however, none have offered any concrete evidence.
“They have helped,” Nuttall said of the witnesses. “They’ve given us very accurate physical descriptions, but without any physical evidence to trace back to them, a license plate number, a name, things kind of reach a stand-still.”
Nuttall also commented that it is common for fear to play a large role in witnesses choosing to avoid the police.
“I just need a phone call, someone to point us in the right direction,” Nuttall said. “I don’t even need to know a name.”
On hand for Tuesday’s press conference were Lopez’s widow, Guadalupe Gomez, as well as his five children.
Melesio Lopez, the son of the former Hoagies and Wings cook, addressed the media on behalf of Lopez family.
“It’s really tough,” Melesio said. “We lost our dad and we can’t replace him.”
Melesio, 16, said that he felt those that know the men are scared to inform the police.
“I want them to get the people that did this,” Melesio said. “I want justice. I want people to not be afraid and come to the police.”
Melesio also revealed that his mother is currently unemployed and that his father worked two jobs to support their family.
When asked who is supporting the family now, Melesio replied, “Nobody.”
“I had him for 16 years but they’re not going to be able to have him,” Melesio added, motioning towards his younger siblings, ages seven, six, four and two.
In support of the Lopez family, for Gomez and her children. Checks can be made payable to Guadalupe Gomez and mailed to Hoagies and Wings.
“The city sends its love to the family because they will never have their father,” LaBonge said. “The only thing we can pray for is justice. Just like with the tragedy in Colorado, we’re mourning for your family.”