Trader Joe's Hostage Situation Suspect Identified, Bail Set At $2 Million

Trader Joe's Hostage Situation Suspect Identified, Bail Set At $2 Million

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A tragic hostage situation at a Trader Joe’s in the Los Angeles suburb Silver Lake left one employee dead on Saturday. According to CNN, Gene Evin Atkins has been identified as the suspect. 28-year-old Atkins is being held on one count murder, with more charges to be handed down as the investigation continues. His bail has been set at $2 million. Melyda Eldorado, who worked at the store, was killed in the standf. 

Reports claim that Atkins was fleeing police, who were on his tail after he threatened his grandmother with a gun and fired at her. He took his grandmother’s car, but crashed it running from the police. Atkins then abandoned the vehicle and took about 40 hostages at the Trader Joe’s. He eventually gave up and handcuffed himself before surrendering. The Trader Joe’s remains closed after the tragedy, but they did release a statement about the shooting. “Yesterday marks the saddest day in Trader Joe’s history as we mourn the loss one our own,” read the statement. “Our thoughts are with her family, and our Crew Members and customers who experienced this terrifying and unimaginable ordeal. Our Silverlake store will remain closed until further notice to give our Crew Members time to process yesterday’s events. We will continue to do whatever we can to support them, including providing grief counselors to help them cope with the situation.”