Christine Clarridge, The Seattle Times, September 15, 2011
About 250 people were at the July car show in Kent, bumping to the music of a rap group, when one of the performers invited the audience to throw out gang hand signs, police say.
The resulting display of gang affiliation sparked a shootout between rival Latino gang members, according to police, and left 12 people injured and more than a half-dozen men facing criminal charges.
On Thursday, Kent Police Chief Ken Thomas announced the arrest of four men in connection with the July 23 shooting in the parking lot of the La Plaza strip mall. Police say two other men have been charged with assault and are being sought on warrants.
In addition, there are at least two more suspects from the shooting at the La Raza Car Show and Concert that police are working to identify.
“We believe there were five shooters and that there are at least two other additional shooters out there,” Thomas said.
Thomas said detectives and crime analysts from 14 law-enforcement agencies, as well as gang experts and prosecutors, logged more than 2,000 hours investigating the shooting, which propelled King County to dedicate $1.4 million to combat what officials have called an erupting war among Latino gangs.
The shooting erupted during the unauthorized lowrider car show that drew 200 to 300 people to the shopping center. The victims ranged in age from 14 to 32, according to police.