Deadly child custody exchange

Police: Child custody exchange leaves a mother dead after ‘dad’ flies into a rage

A California man is behind bars on suspicion of murder he reportedly shot his child’s mother and severely injured another man on Sunday in Whittier, in what was supposed to be an amiable custody exchange.

KTLA reports that Efrem Lozoya, 38, met up with his child’s mother, Nereida Villanueva, 33, and her boyfriend, whose name is unknown at this time, at around 11 p.m. off of the 13900 block of Coteau Drive. They were in the middle of a custody exchange of their two children, ages seven and nine, when Lozoya became angered, pulled out a gun, and shot Villanueva and her boyfriend. Villanueva died from her injuries and her boyfriend is in critical condition.

Witnesses said that both children watched the entire ordeal and started screaming for assistance. The children were not physically injured.

“It’s just sad for her kids. Now they both don’t have a mom or a dad,” a resident told KTLA. “I’m a mom. That’s heartbreaking. How could he do that to his own kids? Take away their mom.”

The suspect, a police department administrator, turned himself in after the shooting. He was booked into the Montebello Police Department, where he’s being held on $2 million bail.

Check back with Crime Online as additional details become available.

[Feature Photo: KTLA/Screenshot]