Bell Gardens Mayor fatally shot, allegedly by his wife

September 30, 2014
Police officers stand by the scene of a shooting in Bell Gardens, Calif., Tuesday, Sept. 30, 2014. Bell Gardens mayor Daniel Crespo was shot to death Tuesday during an argument with his wife, who was taken into custody, authorities said. (AP Photo/Nick Ut)

Police officers stand by the scene of a shooting in Bell Gardens, Calif., Tuesday, Sept. 30, 2014. Bell Gardens mayor Daniel Crespo was shot to death Tuesday during an argument with his wife, who was taken into custody, authorities said. (AP Photo/Nick Ut)

BELL GARDENS (CNS) – Bell Gardens Mayor Daniel Crespo was fatally shot today in a domestic dispute, allegedly by his wife, who was described as Crespo’s high school sweetheart.

The shooting was reported shortly after 2:30 p.m. at a townhome or apartment complex in the 6300 block of East Gage Avenue, according to county sheriff and fire officials.

Sheriff’s officials at the scene said Crespo, 45, was shot multiple times at his home. Sheriff’s officials said Crespo and his wife, 43-year-old Levette Crespo, were involved in an altercation when their son, 19-year-old Daniel Crespo Jr., intervened, prompting a fight between father and son.

Levette Crespo then allegedly grabbed a gun and shot the mayor.

Levette Crespo was detained for questioning. Daniel Crespo Jr. was also being questioned.

According to the mayor’s official biography on the city’s website, Daniel and Levette Crespo were married in 1986 as teenagers while they lived in New York. The biography describes Crespo’s wife as “his high school sweetheart.”

They also had a daughter, who was born in 1987, according to the city.

Crespo worked as a Los Angeles County deputy probation officer.

According to the city, he was working in a gang and narcotics unit. Los Angeles County CEO Bill Fujioka posted on his Twitter account that Crespo was a “long time L.A. County employee, 21+ years on the job with our probation department.”

He was elected to the Bell Gardens City Council in 2001.

In a message posted on the city’s website, Mayor Pro Tem Priscilla Flores and council members Pedro Aceituno, Jose Mendoza and Jennifer Rodriguez wrote, “It is with great sadness that we inform you that Mayor Daniel Crespo was shot this afternoon and has died from his injuries. According to a preliminary investigation, the shooting does not appear to be city related or to his activities as mayor. Our thoughts and prayers should be with Mayor Crespo’s family at this tragic time.”

The Brooklyn, New York, native had a degree in psychology and family counseling from East Los Angeles College and a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice and public administration from Cal State Los Angeles. He was working on a master’s degree in public administration, according to the online biography.

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