A man suspected in the shooting death of a homeless person in the north San Fernando Valley has been charged with a hate crime, prosecutors said Thursday.
Ryan Bush, 48, was shot on the morning of July 5 in Sylmar. He died at a hospital.
Bush was allegedly targeted “based on a presumption of his gender identity and sexual orientation,” the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office said in a statement.
The 29-year-old suspect faces one count of murder and attempted murder with a hate crime allegation. Arraignment was scheduled for Thursday afternoon.
The suspect was walking past Bush, who was talking to another person, near Foothill Boulevard and Polk Street when he pulled out a gun and opened fire outside a convenience store. He approached the pair and made disparaging and
offensive comments’ about Bush’s clothing and appearance, police said.
He also was charged with shooting a bystander.
“Hate crimes have spiked across the country in recent years and we remain steadfast in ensuring that we hold these violent individuals accountable while working to prevent such violence from happening in the future,” District Attorney George Gascón said in the statement.
Police scheduled a news conference for Thursday afternoon to discuss the case and arrest.