Authorities have identified the man responsible for the fatal shooting of Laura Ann Carleton, a shop owner in Lake Arrowhead, California. Travis Ikeguchi, 27, allegedly engaged in a heated argument with Carleton at her store, Mag.Pi, over a Pride flag displayed outside. The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department reported that Ikeguchi hurled homophobic slurs and made disparaging remarks about the flag. The confrontation escalated, resulting in Ikeguchi shooting and killing Carleton, who was 66 years old. Ikeguchi fled the scene but was later tracked down by deputies. When confronted by law enforcement, he opened fire and was subsequently shot and killed.
Social media accounts, potentially belonging to Ikeguchi, were discovered on platforms such as Gab and X. These accounts featured anti-LGBTQ+ content, anti-police rhetoric, and other conspiratorial posts. The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department has not yet commented on the social media pages. The killing of Carleton has deeply affected the residents of Lake Arrowhead and has garnered attention from the global LGBTQ+ community. Sarah Kate Ellis, president of GLAAD, expressed her condolences and condemned the targeted attack on Carleton over the Pride flag.