Horror as New Zealand tourist killed in front of husband in Newport Beach

The family of a mother killed in broad daylight in front of her husband as the pair shopped at a ritzy Californian mall say “no words” can describe the grief they are going through.

Patricia (Trish) McKay was visiting Newport Beach, California, with her husband — prominent Auckland businessman Doug McKay — when the pair were set upon by two men as they strolled through the up-market Fashion Island mall.

The couple, who had traveled to the US on holiday from their home in New Zealand, were browsing the mall when the attempted robbery occurred.

According to local police, a struggle broke out before the men dragged McKay to a parking lot.

It was there she was allegedly run over by a third person driving a white Toyota Camry before the trio allegedly made a getaway.

Patricia (Trish) McKay was visiting Newport Beach, California, with her husband — prominent Auckland businessman Doug McKay when she was killed. Supplied / News.Com.Au

While McKay walked away uninjured, three shots were reportedly fired during the ordeal — however no one was struck by the stray bullets.

Speaking to media, Heather Rangel from LA’s Police Department said an investigation continues however three suspects had been taken in to custody.

As reported by the Los Angeles Times, police identified the trio as 26-year-old Leroyernest Joseph McCrary of Compton, 18-year-old Jaden Cunningham of Lancaster and 18-year-old Malachi Edward Darnell of Los Angeles.

The shopping mall in Newport Beach is typically a peaceful area with a lot of wealth, with some describing it as a place where people are “always flashing a Rolex”. ABC7

All three were taken into custody on suspicion of homicide, robbery with a firearm and conspiracy.

The trio were arrested after a lengthy car chase through the streets of Newport Beach, and eventually along highways to Cypress.

It is there the suspects ditched the car and tried to run away before being captured.

In a new statement released by those closed to McKay, family say “no words can express our sadness as we try to come to terms with the loss of our mother, wife, and friend Patricia”.

“We ask for privacy at this time as we work through this as a family.”

The trio were arrested after a lengthy car chase through the streets of Newport Beach, and eventually along highways to Cypress. KCAL NEWS
The suspects ditched the car and tried to run away before being captured. KCAL NEWS

New Zealand’s Prime Minister Christopher Luxon called McKay’s death “an absolute tragedy”.

In an interview with Newstalk ZB’s Kerre Woodham, Luxon revealed he knew her husband McKay very well.

“He’s a great man and it’s a great family … I think the family will be in huge shock and all our thoughts and prayers are with them,” he said.

“They’re top people.”

Auckland’s Deputy Mayor Desley Simpson also paid tribute to McKay, saying the 68-year-old was “amazing, funny, loyal, and loving” and that she was “beyond devastated”.

“Trish was the wife of Doug McKay who was [among other significant roles] the inaugural CEO of the amalgamated Auckland Council,” Simpson said.

“Trish was amazing – funny, loyal, and loving. My absolute deepest sympathies to Doug and her family. In absolute shock.”

police identified the trio as 26-year-old Leroyernest Joseph McCrary of Compton, 18-year-old Jaden Cunningham of Lancaster and 18-year-old Malachi Edward Darnell of Los Angeles. KCAL NEWS
Law enforcement officers surround one of the suspects. KCAL NEWS

The shopping mall in Newport Beach is typically a peaceful area with a lot of wealth, with some describing it as a place where people are “always flashing a Rolex”.

One witness, Rachel West, told CBS News she saw people running and a dead body on the ground.

“When I walked up, it was just a dead body laying on the ground,” she recalled.

“All of a sudden 20-30 people came running around the corner screaming, ‘There’s gunshots, there’s gunshots’, and you could tell by the look on their face this wasn’t a drill,” another witness Case Burnett added.

All three suspects were taken into custody on suspicion of homicide, robbery with a firearm and conspiracy. KCAL NEWS

Newport Mayor Will O’Neill said the incident was a “stunning, staggering act”.

“Newport Beach is a safe community and we’re mourning the loss of someone today, a loss that never should have happened,” O’Neill told local media.

“It’s heartbreaking, it’s a tragedy.

Newport Mayor Will O’Neill said the incident was a “stunning, staggering act”. KCAL NEWS

“These are thugs and every community is now dealing with this. We have to do better as a society because we cannot tolerate this.

“This doesn’t happen in Newport Beach. Fashion Island is an incredibly safe place. This is a tragedy, and I’m furious.”

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