An 18-year-old woman was shot dead and a 19-year-old man was seriously injured in a shooting at a California movie screening of The Forever Purge on Monday night in what police are describing as an “unprovoked attack.”
Police in the city of Corona outside Los Angeles said they were called to the Crossings mall at around 11:45 p.m. local time, where they found the pair with multiple gunshot wounds.
Rylee Goodrich, 18, died of her injuries at the scene. Anthony Barajas, a 19-year-old with almost 1 million followers on TikTok, was rushed to a local hospital where he is presently on life support.
The pair had attended a 9:35 p.m. screening of the movie together.
On Wednesday, police announced the arrest of Joseph Jimenez, a 20-year-old Corona resident. He was booked on suspicion of murder, attempted murder, and robbery, and police said they found a firearm that matched the caliber of the weapon used in the movie theater shooting when they searched his home.
As of Wednesday, the motive is still unknown. Jimenez’s bail was set at $2 million.
Police told reporters at a press conference that only six tickets were sold for the screening.
“We’re asking for anyone who might have been inside that movie, or a theater adjacent to that, for any information at all, whether they saw something or heard something, or anybody out in the parking lot in that time frame who may have seen something or heard something, please call us,” said Corporal Tobias Kouroubacalis.
The Forever Purge is the fifth installment in The Purge franchise, which revolves around a dystopian world where all violence is legalized for one day each year, leading to chaos and anarchy.
As Barajas remains in a critical condition, fans have flooded his popular TikTok with well wishes and prayers.
Goodrich was described by cousin Ashley Cole as a “ball of light” in a tribute on ABC News. “This person had a great heart and was always motivated to help other people and to have fun, and was always there for her family and her little sister,” said Cole.
Goodrich had been a student at a Corona high school, an athlete, and the proud owner of a lash extensions business. She was the recipient of a scholarship to Grand Canyon University for its STEM program and was home for the summer visiting family when this tragedy occurred, according to ABC News.
Following her death, a GoFundMe was set up to cover the teenager’s funeral expenses.
“Words seem inadequate to express the sorrow felt by the loss of Rylee. Her kindness, and gentle spirit will be remembered forever,” wrote fundraisers.