A man has been charged with a hate crime in connection with the murder of a homeless man earlier this month in Sylmar, authorities said.
Eric Antonio Sanchez, 29, has been charged with one count of murder and one count of attempted murder with a hate crime allegation in the death of Ryan Bush, 48, the district attorney’s office announced Wednesday. LA County in a statement. Prosecutors say Sanchez targeted Bush because Bush was wearing women’s clothing.
Sanchez is accused of shooting Bush in the early hours of July 5. The victim was talking to another person when Sanchez “made derogatory and offensive comments” toward the victim, authorities said.
Sanchez fired several shots before fleeing the scene. Bush was taken to a nearby hospital in critical condition and later died.
“Targeting someone because of their race, religion, gender or sexual orientation is wrong,” Dist said. Atti. George Gascón said in the statement.
Sanchez is also accused of shooting a bystander, who was not hit, authorities said.
“Hate crimes have increased across the country in recent years and we remain committed to holding these violent individuals accountable while working to prevent such violence from happening in the future,” Gascón said.
The Los Angeles Police Department is still investigating this incident.
Los Angeles Times