Jan 22, 2023
Val Chmerkovskiy & Other Pros Reeling From Dance Studio Massacre
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Getty LOS ANGELES, CA - AUGUST 17: Dancer Valentin Chmerkovskiy attends The Grove Hosts Dancing With The Stars Dance Lab With pros Val Chmerkovskiy, Whitney Carson and Sharna Burgess at The Grove on August 17, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Vivien Killilea/Getty Images for Caruso Affiliated )
It is hitting home for professional dancer Valentin Chmerkovskiy in particular, though many other pro dancers have taken to social media upon learning the news.
Here’s what you need to know:Ten People Are Dead After a Shooting at Star Dance Studio in Monterey Park, California
At around 10:20 p.m. local time on Saturday, January 21, a gunman opened fire in a ballroom dance studio called Star Dance Studio in Monterey Park, California, which is about seven miles east of downtown Los Angeles. The gunman killed 10 people and injured 10 others.
A law enforcement source told the Los Angeles Times that the gunman had a high-powered assault rifle. Five men and five women were killed and the conditions of thos einjured range from critical to stable.
“When officers arrived on scene, they observed numerous individuals, patrons … pouring out of the location, screaming. The officers made entry to the location and located additional victims,” said Sheriff’s Captain Andrew Meyer at a press conference on Sunday morning.
On Saturday January 21, 2023 at 10:22 PM the suspect male/adult/Asian pictured above was involved in a shooting. Investigators have identified him as a Homicide suspect and he should be considered armed and dangerous.
Contact LASD Homicide with any information at 323-890-5000. pic.twitter.com/2gPUBBybvv
— Robert Luna (@LACoSheriff) January 22, 2023
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s office posted on Twitter that the suspect is an adult Asian male standing approximately 5’10” and weighing approximately 150 pounds wearing a black leather jacket, beanie and glasses. The advisory says he should be “considered armed and dangerous.”
Later, officers responded to another incident at the Lai Lai Ballroom & Studio about two miles north of the first incident. L.A. County Sheriff Robert Luna told the Los Angeles Times that a “male Asian suspect” opened fire there, but “some individuals wrestled the firearm from him, and that individual took off.”
Officials are still determining if the two incidents are related. The shootings occured on Lunar New Year’s Eve, a celebration of Chinese New Year. According to the LA Times, Monterey Park is 65 percent Asian American. But the sheriff said that it is too early to tell if the shootings are connected to the Lunar New Year celebrations.Val Chmerkovskiy ‘Cannot Believe’ This Has Touched the Ballroom Dance Community
After news broke of the two shootings, pro Val Chmerkovskiy took to his Instagram stories to express his heartbreak and disbelief, and to ask for anyone who knows how he can help to send him a direct message (DM).
Heartbreaking to hear about the mass shooting that occurred at a ballroom dance studio in Monterey Park this morning. As a teen, I’ve done so many shows at studios like this one, specifically for evenings like this, as the community celebrated the Lunar New Year with dinner, tea, and a night of ballroom dance.
My partner and I were not just welcomed but always celebrated. If anyone knows anyone or anything about this incident and can help me in the direction to best help or be of any service, please DM me. Our ballroom dance community is small and we have to be there for each other. #LaiLaiBallroom
He later amended his initial post because of some confusion about the location, writing, “Correction: Star Dance Studio is where the shooting occurred and then the gunman apparently went to nearby Lai Lai. Star Dance Studio, I cannot believe it! I cannot believe this would ever touch our ballroom community.”
Pro Witney Carson posted in her Instagram stories, “Praying so hard right now for the victims’ families. Heart is breaking! We need solutions.”
Former pro Karina Smirnoff reposted a message from the World Dance Organization (WDO) that reads, “The WDO are devastated to learn of a mass shooting that took place last night at Star Dance Studio in Monterey Park, near Los Angeles. Ten people are confirmed dead with many more injured. We send our sincere condolences to the families, friends and colleagues of the victims at this terrible time.”
Pros Derek Hough, Lacey Schwimmer and Sasha Farber reposted two news stories to his Instagram stories.
“My heart goes out to the victims and their families. When will this end? Praying for their families,” wrote pro Daniella Karagach.
News Source: Heavy.com
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