Melyda Corado: Trader Joe’s Employee Killed By LAPD Gunfire in 2018


Memorial for Meylda Corado at Trader Joe's

A memorial for Melyda Corado sits outside the Trader Joe’s where she was shot by an LAPD officer in Silver Lake. (Source)

September 6, 2021 ~ By Shari Rose

After an armed gunman ran into Trader Joe’s, LAPD officers fired shots into the grocery store, killing Corado

Melyda Corado shot to death by LAPD in 2018

Melyda Corado in an undated photo. (Source)

On July 21, 2018, two LAPD officers received a call that a man named Gene Atkins had shot his grandmother and escaped the scene in her car. Police found his car on the road and began pursuing. Atkins drove erratically and shot multiple times from his car, though he did not hit anyone. 

Atkins crashed his car in front of Trader Joe’s in Silver Lake. He jumped out and ran for the entrance, firing shots at police. The officers, Sinlen Tse and Sarah Winans, both fired back. 

Melyda Corado, 27, and other employees at the store heard the crash. Corado ran toward the front of the store, during which she was struck by LAPD gunfire. Police say that neither their body cams nor their dash cameras caught Melyda being shot. 

Atkins then took several hostages, and eventually agreed to let Corado be taken out of the store to be treated for the gunshot wound. She was pronounced dead at the scene. Atkins was arrested about an hour later.

Los Angeles DA’s office clears Sinlen Tse of wrongdoing in Corado’s death 

Melyda Corado’s family filed a wrongful death suit against the LAPD after her death. A trove of documents related to the killing, including autopsy and officer statements, was ordered for released by a Los Angeles County Superior Court judge in June 2019. However, it took over a year after that ruling for the LAPD to finally release a report into Corado’s killing. 

Dash cam footage of Atkins running into Trader Joe's

Dash cam footage from Tse’s patrol vehicle captures Gene Atkins running from his car and into the Trader Joe’s. (Source)

The report identified Sinlen Tse as the officer who killed Corado. However, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office blamed Atkins for Corado’s death, and not the person who fired the bullet:

“We conclude that Corado was killed due to Atkins’ provocative act resulting in the officers’ responding to Atkins use of deadly force and therefore Atkins of criminally responsible for Corado’s death.”

Two years after the Trader Joe’s police shooting, Corado’s family led an anti-police violence protest through Silver Lake. A couple hundred people joined in and demanded justice in Corado’s death. 

2021 protest for Melyda Corado in Silver Lake

Hundreds of people march through Silver Lake in July 2021 to demand justice in Corado’s death. (Source)

As of the publishing of this article, it does not appear that Tse faced any consequences for killing an innocent bystander. 

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This story about Melyda Corado is part of a larger project that looks at recent police shootings of Latinos in Los Angeles.

More stories: Daniel Rivera: Killed By LAPD In Arleta On Body Cam Footage in 2020

More stories: Cesar Antonio Rodriguez: Killed By Long Beach Police Over $1.75 Fare

More stories: The Cruelty of U.S. Migrant Detention Facilities in 2020 

More stories: The Lives of Ferguson & Black Lives Matter Protesters Cut Short

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Shari Rose

Shari Rose

Owner of Blurred Bylines

Shari Rose created Blurred Bylines to help bring stories from marginalized perspectives and experiences into the national conversation. A former journalist and current freelance SEO enthusiast, she does her best to combine both in her stories at BB. The articles she writes typically involve individuals or social movements that are uniquely American in their struggles, triumphs, and challenges. 💖💜💙✊🏼

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