Man Charged with Firing Shots as Crowd Gathered to Mourn Singer's Death

Mexican singer Vicente Fernandez speaks

Photo: Getty Images

LOS ANGELES (CNS) - An ex-con was charged today with three felony counts stemming from gunshots he allegedly fired as a crowd gathered along the Hollywood Walk of Fame to mourn Mexican singer Vicente Fernandez's death.

Joseph Michael Dietrich, 35, is set to be arraigned Wednesday at the downtown Los Angeles courthouse on one count each of discharge of a firearm with gross negligence, possession of a firearm by a felon and unlawful possession of ammunition, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office.

The shots were fired from an apartment building across the street from the memorial in the 6200 block of Hollywood Boulevard and were reported around 6:30 p.m. Sunday, according to Los Angeles Police Department Sgt. Andrew Dineen at the Hollywood Station.

Witnesses told reporters they heard four or five shots fired from an apartment building at 6201 Hollywood Blvd., east of Vine Street.

The witnesses also said they saw a person's arm holding a handgun from an upper-story window in the apartment building across the street from the memorial for Fernandez. One bullet struck a glass door on that side of the street, according to multiple media reports.

A team of LAPD officers entered the building and based on information provided by witnesses, narrowed the search area, Dineen said.

Officers then found the alleged shooter, took him into custody and recovered a handgun.

The man provided no reason for allegedly firing the gunshots, Dineen said.

No one was hit in the shooting.

The LAPD shut down that section of Hollywood Boulevard during the search for the gunman.

Dietrich has remained jailed since his arrest at about 7:40 p.m. Sunday, according to jail records.

Prosecutors allege he was convicted in 2013 of four charges, including criminal threats.

Photo: Getty Images

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