The family of a 14-year-old girl who was fatally injured by Los Angeles police while shopping for Christmas clothes last Thursday is calling for transparency in the investigation.
Valentina Orellana-Peralta was shopping with her mother when the couple heard screams and hid in a locker room where Los Angeles police shot a girl after an officer shot a suspect and a bullet pierced a wall, the family said Tuesday. …
The teen died in his mother’s arms last Thursday at a Burlington store in the North Hollywood area of San Fernando Valley. Her family said that the teenager loves skateboarding and dreams of becoming a robot engineer.
After screams erupted in the store on Christmas Eve, the teen locked the dressing room door.
“We sat on the seat, holding each other and praying when something hit my daughter Valentina and threw us to the floor,” Soledad Peralta said on Tuesday. “And my daughter died in my arms. I couldn’t do anything. “
The teen’s family stood outside the Los Angeles Police Department (L Associated PressD) headquarters on Tuesday next to a large photograph of Orellana Peralta topped with flowers to call for justice and remember their daughter.
Speaking Spanish and holding back tears over the howling of sirens in downtown Los Angeles, they said they left Chile to escape violence and injustice in search of a better life in the United States.
L Associated PressD on Monday posted an edited video package online that included emergency calls, radio broadcasts, TV footage, and surveillance footage from Thursday’s footage of a store packed with holiday shoppers. The department’s policy is to publish videos of critical incidents, such as police shootings, within 45 days.
The family’s lawyers, including civil rights lawyer Ben Crump, sent a letter to the L Associated PressD asking for more video of the shooting incident, which culminated in police pursuing a suspected man who brutally assaulted shoppers in a store.
Surveillance video showed the suspect attacked two women in the aisles of the store.
Several people, including store employees, called the police and said that the man was hitting customers with a bicycle lock. One of the callers told the 911 dispatcher that the man had a gun. No firearms were found at the scene – only a bicycle lock.
Early CCTV footage showed a man carrying a bicycle up a store escalator to the second floor, where he wandered, seemingly disoriented, clutching a bicycle lock with a cable. Sometimes he stood motionless, looking into the distance.
Later, the video showed a man on a descending escalator attacking a woman who managed to escape from his grasp and run out of the store.
Police said the suspect briefly left the store but returned and violently attacked another woman who was injured.
In the video to bodykam, armed officers entered the store and approached the suspect.
One held a rifle and pushed to the front of the pack as the officers lined up through the store.
Other officers repeatedly said “slow down” and “slow down” as the officer with the rifle moves forward.
Shouts “hold up” before the shots
“She is bleeding!” the officer shouted as they faced the beaten victim crawling across the blood-stained floor. The suspect was on the other side of the aisle.
“Hold on! Hold on!” another officer screamed shortly before three shots were fired.
Police said the officer holding the rifle fired.
Suspect Daniel Elena Lopez, 24, died at the scene.
“At this preliminary stage of the investigation, it is believed that the victim was injured by one of the shots fired by the officer at the suspect,” Police Captain Stacy Spell said in the posted video. Police believe the bullet flew off the floor and hit the wall of the locker room.
The California Department of Justice is also investigating.
“We at L Associated PressD would like to express our deepest condolences and deepest regrets for the loss of this innocent victim, Valentina Orellana-Peralta. There are no words that can describe the depth of sadness we feel at this tragic outcome, ”Spell said in the video.
According to the Los Angeles Times, in 2021, L Associated PressD officers shot and killed 38 people – 18 of them fatal, including a Sunday shot at a man with a knife. These numbers mark a sharp rise in the number of cases where officers have shot or killed people over the past two years.
The mourners left flowers and a votive candle outside the shop for Christmas at the Orellana-Peralta memorial. Her family said she got good grades even though English was her second language and she had only been in the US for about six months.
Her father, Juan Pablo Orellana Larenas, had already bought tickets to move to the United States when he learned of his daughter’s death.
According to him, they planned to go to an NBA basketball game – she was a fan of the star LeBron James – and watch their favorite band perform.
LeBron James: sad and tragic
“This is very sad and very tragic,” James told The Associated Press after the Los Angeles Lakers game on Tuesday against the Houston Rockets. “Every time a family loses a loved one in an incident like this, you can just grieve with them and feel the sincerity of it, and just pray that no child should ever, ever lose their life to an act like this. “
Orellana Larenas was holding a brand new skateboard, still in plastic packaging, that his daughter had ordered over the Internet outside the L Associated PressD headquarters. He was delivered after she died.
The family plans to leave a skateboard at her grave “so she can ride with the angels,” her father said.
The Times reported that Elena Lopez’s previous criminal history includes convictions for stealing a car, carrying a loaded pistol in public, and carrying a pistol as a criminal. Authorities have not released his history of being held in the state prison system, citing an ongoing investigation.
The woman who was attacked had moderate to severe injuries, including injuries to the head, arms and face. She was not named publicly.