From Tucson to LA, the toll of violence on hometown streets


Check out this May 21 story: Santa Monica’s third homicide of 2008

Los Angeles Times, LAPD chief vows to clarify policy on immigrants, April 17

Los Angeles Police Chief William J. Bratton said Wednesday that the department’s controversial policy on dealing with illegal immigrants was widely misunderstood by the public and some of his own officers, and he would clarify the rule in the next couple of weeks. -Los Angeles Times

Los Angeles Times, Zine wants to amend LAPD policy on immigrants, April 11, Jamiel’s Dad talks with Mayor Sam, April 10

KNBC, 19-year-old pleads not guilty in Jamiel Shaw, Jr. homicide case, April 9

Houston Chronicle (AP), Alleged gang member pleads not guilty in slaying, April 9

Los Angeles Times, Explaining Special Order 40 (opinion), April 9

Los Angeles Times, Ask and deport, family urges, April 9, Shaw’s family proposes law to help curb violence (VIDEO), April 8

FOX News, “Jamiel’s Law” targets illegal immigrant gang members, April 8, Jamiel Shaw’s parents meet with city leaders, April 8

Los Angeles Times, Grieving father feels failed by 18-year plan, April 8

The Daily Collegian (Penn State University) Cities bleed with ‘death by percentages, April 8, Fear of a Black-Brown race war in Los Angeles, April 3

Pedro Espinoza mug shot and booking sheet

CNN, Dad faces son’s alleged killer; sees ‘normal’ youngster, March 26

Murder suspect Pedro Espinoza
  • MyFoxLA, Arraigment postponed in Jamiel Shaw case, March 25
  • KABC-TV, Man accused of killing teen heads to court, March 25
  • Suspect in Jamiel Shaw Jr. case may be in US illegally, posted 3/22/08

It’s been 18 days since Jamiel Shaw Jr. was shot and killed in Los Angeles. One suspect’s in custody. Another is on the loose.

For many, any sense of understanding why someone would kill the teenager is also yet to be found.

And the violence continues.

At, Charlene Muhammad writes a thought-provoking commentary beneath the headline, Gang shootings stun Los Angeles: Football hero slain, nine others injured as violence surges in the city.

Muhammad’s column is a worthwhile read.

Not all of the LA-area murders making headlines appear to be gang-related. The motive behind the killing of 21-year-old Juliana Redding in Santa Monica has yet to be reported. If police know it, they’re keeping that between themselves and the killer.

The familiar circumstances leading-up to Redding’s death can present pitfalls for any journalist charged with reporting the story. Framing it within the predictable, “like so many, she came to SoCal to pursue a dream that ended tragically,” is not just cliché. It seems to dehumanize a very human loss.

Many people in Redding’s hometown of Tucson feel that loss. But the young woman’s story didn’t lead last night’s newscasts.

Sadly, in Tucson, a missing retired schoolteacher was found dead in her car this week. 66-year-old Gayle Katherine Patrick had been shot ( Breaking News: arrest in Patrick case).

Patrick is one of three elderly Tucson-area women who’ve gone missing in recent months. The two others have yet to be found.

By my count, there have been at least 20 murders in Tucson this year. The death of a cab driver named Tim Royce is just one of the other killings that have already made news in March.

And late Tuesday night in Tucson, a man was killed after he was thrown from a car.

Tucson police say nearly 40-percent of the city’s 2008 murders are gang-related.

LA’s hardly alone in its struggle with violent crime.

1 thought on “From Tucson to LA, the toll of violence on hometown streets”

  1. In September the Tucson murder rate is only increasing and from rumors it may reach close to it’s highest record high ever since 2000. Then if this happens, the city will be struck with paranoia and many will be afraid to even step foot outside of their door. From studying many statistics of different cities here on the net and actually being familiar with the streets of Tucson myself, I believe that there are many more ATTEMPTED murders in Tucson than there are actual fatalities. Yes, we have a lot of criminals who do not fall under the “gangster” category but for the ones who are, they are extremely ignorant and stubborn for that matter. Not to be racist, given that I already look mexican, in my opinion, mexican gangsters are pitiful and a disgrace. The few 20-30 thousand blacks we have in this city appear to have more brains than those fruitcake mexican gangsters could ever fathom. Gang violence is not a joke and if I were a victim of gang violence I would feel threatened, even if it were by the very mexican gangsters I hate. The point is………….absolutely no one will read this so I’m not worried for a second what I say on here. Also, the illegal immigration subject is beaten down to an oblivion so I won’t mention that I feel that those MOOCHERS don’t even deserve to be in this country. If you’re smart, you’ll know why I say this. Thank you for reading.

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