14 Year Old Girl Killed, Story Ignored by Mainstream News

Again proving that The Homicide Report may be the most important blog in Los Angeles, Jill Leovy reports that Diana Tomas, a 14 year old Latina girl, was shot in the head at 417 N. LaFayette Park Place just south of the 101 Freeway, between Echo Park Lake and Silver Lake Blvd. on Sunday, Dec. 2nd at 2:30pm. She died four days later on Dec. 6th.

Jill points out that investigators did not know who Diana was until days later and believed she was 20 years old, even though on the same day she was shot her mother had reported her as missing at the Rampart police station.

It took a few more days to put it together. Diana’s mother heard a rumor that a young woman had been shot and returned to the station to ask if this might be her daughter. A detective drove her to the hospital, where she saw her daughter, still alive on life support, and identified her.

Comments on the blog express outrage at the fact the even the L.A. Times.com has yet to mention this story on their front page. AB writes: “Regardless, did you hear Michael Vick got 23 months?, and fyi a water main broke and dumped water on Van Halen’s pool.”

15 Replies to “14 Year Old Girl Killed, Story Ignored by Mainstream News”

  1. IT is sad, even outrageous the details that followed. That poor mother and family.

    I wonder though what events happened on the day of the shooting that got more attention. Sadly mainstream news is about making a profit for the share holders and they grab the story that will capture the most market when it happens. I can’t say what would have happened if the shooting took place on a slow news day what the outcome would have been.

  2. There are many murders that go unreported – what’s the angle on the daughter? Why is it more important for residents to know about this particular murder?

  3. A kid was likely caught in the crossfire of gangwarfare. I don’t think you need much more of an angle than that.

    But, if you do, that the police had a hard time connecting the dots between the missing girl report and the unknown girl in the hospital is somewhat troubling.

  4. Are there really _many_ murders that go unreported in the City of Los Angeles? My assumption is that the Homicide Report is covering them all and they go to various sources including the LA coroner. I think murder is a big deal and should probably trump other news. I thought it rather unnerving to read the homicide report entry that mentioned how many murders are getting away with it.

  5. A Latina shot in LA? That barely rates as news here slow newsday or not. I am curious how the police managed not to put two and two together though.

  6. It is a sad thing that all our young Men & Women are just being killed over things that don’t belong to them and what they cannot control but think they do and can. It is sad to say but the area where this young woman lives is full of Fools, Gang Bangers and Wana Be Gang Bangers. So if she isn’t Banging herself why was she there or was she just in the wrong place at the right time. Either way simply put another Child lost to violence and a Mother left grieving the lost of a Child. So maybe we should get our Heads out of our ASS and quit letting the streets and the idiots in them take away something that is so precious to us our Children and out Future. Everyone loves a Fool but Nobody Loves a Coward and that is what we all have become>Cowards.

  7. While the death is another sad emblem of a huge social problem, it’s a daily event, unfortunately. Coldwater being blocked by a mudslide affects thousands of commuters, so it’s bigger news.

    Not sayin’ I agree with it, but just sayin’ is all.

  8. It’s amazing that we know how many people, sorry, americans, are killed in Iraq every day but that in a city this big, a murder goes unreported.

  9. What a shocker, inequity in the media (possibly the largest contributor to implied ethnocentrism around today). BTW, I’m, so fucken sick of hearing about the writer’s strike and Malibu fires like it’s the end of the world; especially when both things have no effect on over 3/4ths of our city.

    Daylight shootings where innocent victims are killed, as well as the gang violence that creates these situations, affects a lot more people in this city than malibu fires or a burst pipe on coldwater canyon, but nobody gives a fuck about brown people unless their guiltover privelege is kicking in or they are one of the few people that knows whatsup.

    Yeah gangbangers are a bunch of pussies (coming from a family of them I have the authority to say so), just as much as the police depts. that lazily arrest every cholo rather than confornt the issue in a proactive manner and the politicians, media and citizens who support that shite. One stereotype many should know: gang injunctions do little beyond create a vacuum that younger dysfunctional kids fill, and the little rationality belonging to the gang is locked up in jail. For every LA gang injunction that worked is one where it just pushed the homies to do their dirt somewhere else or more frequently terrorize enemy territory since they cannot in their own.

  10. I hardly see their racism arguments. I would consider this more along the lines of police negligence over racism. We are talking the Rampart Division and I used to live in the neighborhood. MS13 tags all over, gang shootings often, police presence in that area is near imaginary. The cops in this town still have a lot of work in the poorer areas but look at the homicide decrease in black, poor, Compton. All because they stepped up patrol. This is what needs to be done in that specific area as well.

  11. ^
    I dunno, I worked in the CPT when things went from bad to better in terms of body counts, and it didnt seem like the police had an increased presence or impact. From several credible sources (including civic employees and gang officers) the decrease in homicides was more the result of socio-political activities by local gangs rather than the police. The years when Compton (or anywhere’s) homicide #s skyrocket is when gangs are majorly warring, and I heard (but cannot confirm) that shootings and asswhippings are still at a all time high along Wilmington Avenue.

    But , I do know that an injunction in Pomona has really helped, despite a lack of carrot to go with the stick.

  12. Wow, I’m incredibly sad to hear about this. I’m very familiar with this area. No one in the neighborhood ever wanted that horrible sound wall, we all knew it would attract gang graffiti.
    It’s amazing that the police were so slow to respond considering the police station is one small block away.

  13. Diana u will always be in ur heartz no matter wat i will alwayz miss u n never forget u b/c u were a great frend hop u r in a bettr place!
    no matter wat happens i will always remember the person i met n ramirez 4 period luv u my gurl rest in peace =[::luv u never goin 2 forget u daina tomas

    ppl r goin 2 miss u alot u were a great friend n no1 that met u r goin 2 forget u b/c u were the best of the best my gurl i’m so_0 so_0 sad that u have 2 leave that way n not by time u were 2 young 2 go y man that sucks u left us n so_0 painful how it happen i luv so_0 much that i can’t stop tellin u how much i luv u u were a great friend nver goin 2 forget htis homegurl luv u my girl hop i get 2 see when its my time 2 leave from this cruel n sucky life!

  14. On December 13, 2007, ABC7’s local news reported that a 14 year old girl, Diana Tomas, was gunned down on Sunday, December 2, 2007, died in the hospital on Wednesday afternoon. Her mother reported her missing on Sunday, but the connection to the girl gunned down and the missing fourteen year old was not made until yesterday afternoon. This is when the mother was notified. The girl died as soon as her mother was at her bedside. She was shot on Sunday afternoon almost at the exact location my aunt committed suicide three decades ago, off the Benton Way bridge on the 101 Hollywood Freeway. This hit home for many reasons, one I already mentioned, another is I have four daughters (two being around this poor victim’s age), and my other reasons are locked in factors evolving from being raised in the Ghettos of Los Angeles. Ghetto areas all around Los Angeles are full of gangs, drugs, prostitution, and all the other dynamics that are associated with people in low social economic neighborhoods. Crimes like these are a common occurance in these areas mainly because of the personalities that are passed on generation after generation by the people who feel helpless to rise above the poverty level.
    “Poverty should be defined psychologically in terms of those whose place in society is such that they are internal exiles who, almost inevitably, develop attitudes of defeat and pessimism and who are therefore excluded from taking advantages of new opportunities” (Harrington 12). Michael Harrinton’s piece, “A Definition of Poverty,” not only defines poverty, but he explains some of the personality that evolves from poverty. My work in the non-profit world involves working with youths of families from Ghetto areas of Los Angeles County. I always ask the same question, “who do you know that has a college education,” and the answer is almost always, “no one, sir.” When they come into my program, Los Angeles Young Marines, it’s usually because their parents feel this is their last hope. When I listen to the new enrollees, recruits talk, it is always about who got beat-up, who’s having sex with who, and who got kicked out of school. Keep in mind, the mean age of the program is thirteen. Their world revolves around the helplessness of the Ghetto. The parents of these recruits are usually under investigation by Child Services, and they also feel helpless. Victims like Diana Tomas are many in the Ghettos of Los Angeles, and they go unnoticed.
    One cannot help wonder that if Diana was reported missing from a Beverly Hills family, her picture would have been on the evening news that very day. But, this was the Rampart Division of Ghetto L.A.. There are Diana’s being reported missing everyday. Will her parents blame themselves for not being able to better provide for Diana, or subjecting her to this neighborhood of crime? When mom and dad go to work to make just enough to pay the rent and put food on the table, will they not wonder if their work has any meaning, or is because they had to work such long hours away from home that little Diana was taken from them. Unfortunately, this tragedy will feed into their helplessness, and cause further psychological harm to them, their family, extended family, and the ghetto.
    Harrington also wrote in his piece, “Poverty should be defined absolutely, in terms of what man and society could be. As long as America is less than its potential, the nation as a whole is impoverished by that fact. As long as there is the other America, we are, all of us, poorer because of it” (Harrington 13). In 2003, I attended a national conference for Young Marines Inc. in Biloxi, Mississippi where a New Orleans Police captain gave a workshop on gangs and drugs in America. According to this police captain, drugs and gangs in America stemmed from the Ghettos of Los Angeles. If this is true, and let us say it is for the “sake of argument,” then Harrington is on key, when he suggests that there cannot be two America’s, because what happens in one America will by in effect affect the other America if not by shame, then by cause.
    Yes, no secret here: People of low social economic backgrounds develop personalities different than those of privileged backgrounds, and from the perspective of the poor, privilege is anything that pays the rent, affords food, education, and security. They are mean and bitter. The young ones just don’t know enough to explain it; they simply express it by criminal behavior, but they are “MAD.’ Unfortunately, their anger is misguided toward each other. America needs to embrace all of her children and care for them equally, or one “one rotten apple, will spoil the bunch.” In an end note, when America provides for her children, then she can adopt and stretch her arms abroad; plus, then, and only then, can she be an example to other nations

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