OAKLAND, Calif. (BCN) — Oakland Police Chief LeRonne Armstrong said the killing Sunday of a woman in the Asian community “is not who Oakland is” when he briefed reporters late Monday afternoon on the fatal shooting. Oakland dentist Lili Xu, 60, was shot just after 2 p.m. in the 1000 block of Fifth Avenue as she was getting out of a car, police and City Council President Nikki Fortunato Bas’ office said.
Police said Xu struggled to hang on to her valuables as the offender accosted her, then shots were fired, Armstrong said.
“We had another devastating day,” Armstrong said.
Two people lost their lives Sunday. The other was a man officers found on 90th Avenue suffering from blunt force trauma. They were the 76th and 77th slayings in Oakland this year.
Last year at this time, 81 people had died in Oakland killings. Police did not have enough information to say whether Xu’s slaying was a hate crime, Armstrong said.
Xu’s vehicle pulled into the 1100 block of Fifth Avenue when a white, older model Lexus pulled up alongside, the chief said. A suspect approached the passenger side of the car Xu was in as she was getting out, Armstrong said.
That’s when multiple rounds were fired, the chief said. Xu died at a hospital. A video of the attack on Xu can be seen here. Armstrong said that police have run many operations in the Little Saigon area. Additional officers were four or five blocks away when the shooting occurred, Armstrong said.
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In those operations, police have made several key arrests, recovered guns and are addressing human trafficking in the area. Armstrong believes police will identify those responsible for Xu’s death. Police believe there were witnesses.
A white, four-door Tesla was seen in the area and police are asking for someone in that vehicle to please talk to police about what they saw. The Tesla was on Fifth Avenue traveling toward Interstate Highway 880 at about 2 p.m. The Tesla had a distinctive roof rack and a bike rack on its tail.
“This crime was senseless,” Armstrong said.
He said the department is adding more officers because “preventing crime is also about having resources to deter crime.”
The department currently has 685 officers, which is the highest number all year. The department graduated 30 officers Friday and started a new academy Monday. The department expects to graduate another 25 officers in October, Armstrong said.
Anyone with information about Xu’s killing is asked to call police at (510) 238-3641.
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