A tragic incident occurred in Cedar Glen, California on Friday, resulting in the death of a shop owner. The incident unfolded when a man, reportedly angered by the display of a “Pride” flag at the store, confronted the owner, Lauri Carleton. The altercation escalated quickly, and Carleton was shot in the head. The 66-year-old shop owner, known for being an ally to the LGBTQI+ community, tragically lost her life in the incident.
Carleton, who leaves behind her husband of 28 years and nine children from their blended family, owned another Mag Pi store in Studio City. The Cedar Glen store, where the shooting took place, was located in a small shopping center, and it was at this location that the alleged gunman was also killed in a subsequent encounter with the police.
The devastating loss of Carleton has left her loved ones and community in deep shock and grief. Friends and acquaintances have taken to social media to pay tribute to her. Notably, Paul Feig, the director of the movie “Bridesmaids,” shared details of the incident on Instagram, expressing his devastation and calling for an end to intolerance and hateful language towards the LGBTQ+ community.
Bridget Everett, an actor and comedian, also mourned Carleton’s loss on Instagram, highlighting the consequences of anti-LGBTQ rhetoric and emphasizing the devastating impact on Carleton’s family, friends, and community.
The San Bernardino Sheriff’s Department released a press statement regarding the incident. According to the statement, deputies responded to a report of a shooting at the Mag Pi clothing store. Upon arrival, they found Carleton with a gunshot wound, and she was pronounced deceased at the scene. The suspect, who fled on foot, was later located by the deputies near Torrey Road and Rause Rancho Road. A lethal force encounter ensued, resulting in the suspect’s death. The investigation revealed that the suspect had made disparaging remarks about the rainbow flag before carrying out the shooting.
As the investigation continues, the authorities have urged anyone with information about the incident to come forward. The sheriff’s department has provided contact details for the Homicide Detail and also encouraged anonymous tips through the We-Tip Hotline.
Reflecting on Carleton’s life, her passion for fashion shone through. With a successful career in the industry, including working at top fashion shoe stores and with Kenneth Cole, she had a keen eye for style and design. Carleton’s love for traveling, architecture, fine art, and a simpler lifestyle by the lake with her family was evident in her home and lake house.
Mag Pi, Carleton’s store, embodied her belief in tackling everyday life with grace and ease while continuing to dream. Her tragic death serves as a heartbreaking reminder of the need for tolerance and love, and the importance of combating hateful language and actions that can lead to violence against innocent people.
The loss of Lauri Carleton has sent shockwaves through her community, highlighting the impact of intolerance and emphasizing the urgent need for acceptance and respect for all individuals. It is a stark reminder that every word and action matters, and that we must strive towards a society where everyone can live without fear of discrimination or violence.
As the investigation into this tragic incident continues, the hope is that justice will be served, and Lauri Carleton’s death will not be in vain. Our thoughts and condolences go out to her husband, children, family, friends, and the entire LGBTQ+ community, who have lost a true ally and advocate.