Suspect charged with murder of Brianna Kupfer in LA


Seen here in an old mug shot, Shawn Laval Smith, who is suspected of killing UCLA student Brianna Kupfer, is now in custody, the Los Angeles Police Department said Wednesday.

LOS ANGELES (NewsNation Now) — A man has been charged with the murder of Brianna Kupfer, who was killed last week while she was working in a Los Angeles furniture store.

Shawn Laval Smith was charged with one count of murder and a “special allegation that he used a deadly and dangerous weapon, a knife,” according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.

Smith has an extensive criminal record dating back to 2013. He was spotted and arrested Wednesday about 14 miles from the crime scene in Pasadena.

Kupfer was found stabbed to death on the floor of the furniture business Croft House last week. She had been a design consultant for the store. Police said Smith was not known to Kupfer and was a random walk-in to the store.

Smith is being held on a $2 million bail.

On Thursday, people gathered in Hancock Park to mourn and remember Kupfer.

The Kupfer family was not at the vigil Thursday. In a statement to NewsNation, Brianna Kupfer’s father said, “We very much appreciate that this is happening, but it will be too difficult for any of us to attend. The attention is better served just being about Brianna right now.”

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