'dangerous' suspect who murdered ucla student in high-end furniture store identified

‘Dangerous’ Suspect Who Murdered UCLA Student in High-End Furniture Store Identified

On January 13, UCLA student Brianna Kupfer was alone working a shift at a high-end furniture store known as Croft House in Los Angeles when a man walked in. According to police, he was described as a tall Black man with a thin build who was wearing a dark hoodie, sunglasses, pants, and a white N-95 mask.

He was also wearing dark shoes and carrying a dark backpack. When the man entered the store, Kupfer allegedly got a bad feeling.

'dangerous' suspect who murdered ucla student in high-end furniture store identified
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In an attempt to calm her nerves, Kupfer, who was a grad school student at UCLA, texted a friend to alert them of the situation. According to LAPD Lt. John Radtke, Kupfer told her friend she was getting a “bad vibe” from the man, People reported.

“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.’”

Within 14 minutes, the man had stabbed the 24-year-old student to death and fled through the store’s back door. By 1:50 p.m. another customer came in to find Kupfer covered in blood and lifeless on the floor.

'dangerous' suspect who murdered ucla student in high-end furniture store identified

“Regrettably, that person did not see the text immediately,” Lt. Radtke continued. “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.”

Security cameras captured the suspect calmly walking away from the store and police believe he stopped at a nearby 7-11 shortly after. Security cameras from the 7-11 show the suspect purchasing a vape pen.

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‘Dangerous’ Suspect Who Murdered UCLA Student in High-End Furniture Store Identified

Five days later, LAPD police believe they know the man responsible for Kupfer’s burial murder. According to the New York Post, the man has been identified as 31-year-old Shawn Laval Smith.

Smith has a previous record and was cited and released on a misdemeanor charge in LA back in 2020. An announcement released by the LAPD on Tuesday, January 18, said Smith should be considered armed, dangerous, and “highly likely to be using public transportation.”

“This individual responsible for this vicious, senseless, and brutal crime walks amongst us.” In an interview with the New York Post, Kupfer’s father, Todd Kupfer, said he was told by police that Smith’s rap sheet is “much worse” than the public knows.

'dangerous' suspect who murdered ucla student in high-end furniture store identified | on january 13, ucla student brianna kupfer was alone working a shift at a high-end furniture store known as croft house in los angeles when a man walked in.
LAPD

The father continued to say that police notified him that Smith should have been behind bars, but for some reason, wasn’t. Knowing this, Todd said, really touched a nerve.

“We all recognize that this could have happened to anybody’s child. It’s just senseless. My daughter was a completely innocent victim and there was 100 percent no provocation. This touched a really raw nerve. This needs to be a reminder for everyone to ask themselves, ‘Look, do we really want this kind of danger in our lives? What are we doing here?’ This has to change.”

However, as Todd continued, “The detectives felt really confident that the surveillance videos and various information they had would lead them to positive identification.”

“I don’t know exactly what the break was but the detectives told me they were working. These are good detectives who really care about their jobs and who were working very diligently and they were reassuring me that this was something they’re working on 24/7.”

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