LA County Sheriff’s Department says shooting occurred in Monterey Park, a city home to a large Asian population.

Nine people have been killed in a mass shooting east of Los Angeles following a Lunar New Year celebration that attracted thousands, police said.

Sergeant Bob Boese of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said the shooting, which took place late on Saturday, occurred at a business on Garvey Avenue in Monterey Park.

The shooter is male, Boese said early on Sunday.

Monterey Park is a city of about 60,000 people with a large Asian population that’s about 16km (10 miles) from downtown Los Angeles.

Seung Won Choi, who owns the Clam House seafood barbecue restaurant across the street from where the shooting happened, told the Los Angles Times that three people rushed into his business and told him to lock the door.

The people also told Choi that there was a shooter with a machine gun who had multiple rounds of ammunition on him so he could reload. Choi said he believes the shooting took place at a dance club.

Saturday was the start of the two-day festival, which is one of the largest Lunar New Year events in Southern California.

More to follow…