Craig Fiegener

Bail Increased for Suspect in Trader Joe's Shooting

August 16, 2018 - 9:02 am

(KNX 1070) - The suspected Trader Joe's shooter was due in court Thursday.

The arraignment was initially postponed.

The suspect, Gene Atkins, did not enter a plea Thursday. Prosecutors have added new charges including murder and 50 other serious crimes. Arraignment was continued to Sept. 19. Bail was increased to about $23 million up from $19 million, as prosecutors added new charges of hostage-taking connected to the standoff. 

KNX reporter Craig Fiegener:

He's facing a long list of charges including murder, attempted murder, kidnapping and false imprisonment. If convicted of her killing and the other charges, Atkins could end up facing a life sentence.

Trader Joe's reopened in August after a shootout and hostage situation between Atkins and the LAPD.  There was also very emotional final farewell to the woman who was accidentally killed by police during that gunbattle at the market in Silver Lake.

One of the most moving tributes during the funeral service for 27-year-old Melyda Corado came from the father -- who was known to her family and friends as just "Mely."

Corado was the assistant manager of the Trader Joe's -- and was killed by a police bullet that was meant for accused carjacker and hostage-taker Gene Atkins.

LAPD chief Michael Moore also attended the funeral to pay his respects, at the invitation of her father.

Loved ones gathered in the Hollywood Hills Sunday at a public funeral service for her. She was killed in July during a gunfight between LAPD officers and a man police say had just shot his grandmother and girlfriend. The suspect ultimately surrendered after holding hostages inside the Silver Lake store. 

The LAPD released body cam video of the incident this week and confirmed that Corado was killed by one of their bullets. They were returning fire from the suspect, Gene Atkins.

Los Angeles Police Department Chief Michael Moore also joined mourners at the scene of that shootout and hostage crisis at Trader Joe's in Silver Lake where a woman was accidentally killed by police gunfire.

In emotional comments during Tuesday night's gathering Moore said he and everyone else in the department share the grief being felt over the death of Corado. 

The man who police were trying to shoot-- accused shooter and hostage-taker Atkins -- is facing charges that include the store employee's murder even though she was actually hit by a police bullet during the gun battle. 

Moore reported one of the officer's rounds struck Corado, assistant manager, as she was exiting the market and was in close proximity to Atkins, according to Moore. She ran back inside the store and collapsed behind the manager's desk.

She was later carried out by others from the store. Chief Moore says two officers fired their weapons, a six year and a two year veteran on the force. 

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