Wednesday, January 19, 2022

REPORT: Los Angeles Police ID Shawn Laval Smith as Suspected Killer of Brianna Kupfer

Source: Fox News

Published: January 18, 2022

By: Michael Ruiz , Rebecca Rosenberg

Los Angeles police have identified the suspected killer of 24-year-old Brianna Kupfer, a UCLA grad student stabbed to death at her furniture store job last week.

Shawn Laval Smith, 31, should be considered armed and dangerous, according to the LAPD.

Los Angeles County Jail records show Covina police arrested him on Oct. 27, 2020, on a misdemeanor charge. He was released on $1,000 bail. The outcome of that case was not immediately clear.


A law enforcement source tells Fox News Digital that Smith has a rap sheet that spans both coasts, including in San Francisco and South Carolina. His most recent charge is allegedly for shoplifting -- and he landed up in jail in San Mateo after allegedly assaulting a police officer.

Los Angeles District Attorney George Gascon's office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The suspected killer of 24-year-old UCLA grad student Brianna Kupfer appeared on surveillance video at a nearby 7-Eleven store buying a vape pen just 30 minutes after her murder. (LAPD)

Smith allegedly walked into a furniture store on North La Brea Avenue on Jan. 13 and stabbed Kupfer to death moments after she texted a friend to say a man in the store was making her uncomfortable.

"She sent a text to a friend letting her know that there was someone inside the location that was giving her a bad vibe," LAPD Lt. John Radtke said of the Jan. 13 slaying. "Regrettably, that person did not see the text immediately."

Anyone who sees him should call 911 and not approach, police said Tuesday evening.

Los Angeles police are looking for Shawn Laval Smith, 31, in connection with the stabbing death of 24-year-old UCLA grad student Brianna Kupfer. (LAPD)


Police said he's been spotted in numerous locations around Southern California – including Pasadena, Santa Monica, West Hollywood, Covina and San Diego. They also included a mug shot showing Smith wearing a face mask – suggesting a recent run-in with the law sometime after the start of the coronavirus pandemic in March 2020.

(Courtesy of Todd Kupfer)

Just a half-hour after the alleged stabbing at the Croft House, a luxury furniture store, police said surveillance cameras picked up Smith at a 7-Eleven, where he bought a vape pen in cash.

Video shows him wearing sunglasses and a dust mask, which he briefly tugged down to speak to the clerk. Then he grabs some coins from the take-a-penny tray on the counter and hands them over along with a bill.

After paying, he turns back from the door and places the vape down on the counter, and the clerk takes it and appears to hand him another, the video shows. Then he leaves for good.

Anyone with information on his whereabouts should call Los Angeles police at 213-382-9470.

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