Authorities were able to track him down by tracing the semi-automatic weapon he was holding, which yielded his name and description.
This is what we know about how the shooting and manhunt unfolded.
10:22 p.m. PT Saturday, January 21: Shots are fired at a dance studio
A man enters and starts shooting inside Star Ballroom Dance Studio in Monterey Park near a Lunar New Year celebration.
Police respond within three minutes of the first call for help. When they arrive at the dance studio, they see chaos and “extensive carnage,” says Monterey Park Police Chief Scott Wiese.
“There were wounded people. There were people trying to flee out all the doors,” Wiese said. “Inside, they came across a scene that none of them had been prepared for.”
Around 10:45 p.m. PT: The gunman appears at a second dance studio
The armed man shows up at the Lai Lai Ballroom & Studio in nearby Alhambra, a few miles away from the site of the shooting. Witness Brandon Tsay hears the door close and “the sound of metal,” he told ABC’s “Good Morning America.”
Tsay says he realized then he needed to disarm the man, he told GMA.
“When I got the courage, I lunged at him with both my hands, grabbed the weapon and we had a struggle,” Tsay said. “We struggled into the lobby, trying to get this gun away from each other.”
However, authorities say two people wrestled a gun away from the man, according to Los Angeles County Sheriff Robert Luna.
The weapon is recovered by authorities. It is identified as a magazine-fed semi-automatic assault pistol that had an extended large capacity magazine attached to it, the sheriff said.
“They saved lives. This could’ve been much worse,” he said.
Late night Saturday: A manhunt ensues
A description of a white van seen leaving the Alhambra dance studio is broadcast to area law enforcement agencies. This sparks a manhunt across the region.
8:35 a.m. PT Sunday: Police release a description of the suspect
The suspected gunman is still at large, says Luna.
The person who fled the scene is preliminarily described as “a male Asian,” he says, adding there were different descriptions from witnesses and victims.
10:20 a.m. PT Sunday, January 22: The white van is found
Torrance Police officers find the white van matching the description near Hawthorne and Sepulveda Boulevards in Torrance, according to Luna.
When officers drove behind the vehicle, it entered a shopping center parking lot. When officers exit their vehicle, they hear one gunshot.
The officers retreat and call for backup. Armored vehicles arrive and block the van from moving.
11:21 a.m. PT: Authorities share photos of the suspect
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department releases photos of the suspect in the mass shooting.
Luna tweets photos of the man, saying investigators have identified him as a homicide suspect who should be considered “armed and dangerous.”
12:52 p.m. PT: The suspect is dead
A SWAT team clears the area and finds the suspect had shot himself inside the white van, according to Luna. The suspect is pronounced dead at the scene. Several pieces of evidence are found in the van linking the suspect to Monterey Park and Alhambra. A handgun was also found in the van.
5:21 p.m. PT: Police name the suspect
Luna says investigators have confirmed the man found dead in the white van after the standoff is the same person suspected of carrying out the mass shooting in Monterey Park.
The suspect is identified as 72-year-old Huu Can Tran, according to Luna.
CNN’s Dakin Andone, Elizabeth Wolfe, Holly Yan, Chris Boyette, Seán Federico-O’Murchú, Nouran Salahieh, Jeffrey Winter, Casey Tolan, Scott Glover and Michelle Watson contributed to this report.