Murder At Tommy’s: Candlelight Vigil Tomorrow

The Original Tommy’s at Rampart and Beverly where 18-year-old Javier Colleja was gunned down early Sunday morning, is exactly a one-mile bike ride from where I live, but it might as well be 100. If it weren’t for Jill Leovy’s indispensable The Homicide Report blog on latimes.com I’d not know about such senseless tragedies so close (and plenty of those not so close) to home:

The popular hamburger stand was busy. The crowd consisted of young men and women from all over, including some USC students. Colleja was among a group of people standing outside against the wall eating hamburgers, as is customary there. There were some young men and a couple of young women. The attacker, a Latino man or youth dressed in dark clothing, walked up and, without a word, started shooting at the group, then walked away. Colleja was the only person hit. He was taken to County-USC Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.

When officers arrived at the scene, much of the crowd had melted away. Fleeing diners had left unfinished hamburgers on the counter.

Colleja’s murder comes not two weeks after 14-year-old Diana Tomas succumbed to her wounds four days after being shot in the head less than 2,400 feet from my home.

The first comment to Leovy’s post about the Colleja’s death is from Rev. Howard Dotson and gives details of a candlelight vigil scheduled to take place tomorrow (Dec. 20) at 4 p.m. at Tommy’s.

6 Replies to “Murder At Tommy’s: Candlelight Vigil Tomorrow”

  1. Wow. Original Tommy’s on Rampart is traditionally neutral territory (for gangs, at least). Whomever the shooter is might be in for more trouble if the police don’t catch him…

  2. Sadly this is going to happen more and more in Los Angeles in the next coming year. The economy is shot to h-e-two sticks (and this was way before the writers strike, hollywood, put a nice little false front on the realities of the LA economy) and while the media tries to gloss over it, late 80s, early 90s styles LA crime is coming back.

    People are about to get a brutal reminder as to the reasons why people lived on the westside and ran away to suburbia.

    At least this time around with Jill around the murders will have a face, sort of…

    Browne

  3. I’ll put money down Temple st. is warring right now. When I’ve been going by I see their shit everywhere and some dufus with a T on his head banging on 4th.

    As a teen I remember leaving half eaten tommy burgers on the westside of rampart parking lot several times when gunfire erupted at 3am, people used to party there back in the day for realz.

  4. I’d put down good money that Temple St. is warring right now, I’ve seen a lot more tags and some fool with a big T on his head around Beverly and 3rd lately (I posted this yesterday, but it was censored for some reason, despite no cussing).

    Ah, sweet memories of running from the across-the-street parking lot of Tommy’s on rampart. Many a time that was my burger being left on the scene, back in the mid 90s people partied hard in that parking lot. I saw a few clips being dumped (in the sky or into someone, especially when 18 was making it big on the scene) there at 3am, but the place has gotten much safer.

    You also weren’t able to walk by MacArthur Parque back in the day, now I walk around with my kid in a stroller.

  5. Art I got some more memories. I had a friend who was robbed and beat up and woke up at the Fatburgers on Vermont in Los Feliz. He woke up and his burger was gone (i guess he should have ran a little faster,) we didn’t even bother to call the cops, because we knew they wouldn’t show up…

    People always wonder why people don’t call the cops. I know why. The cops don’t show up and if they do and you’re there, they think you had something to do with it and they take your name and start watching you as if to punish you for talking.

    I swear I think the cops, gangs, and drug dealers are all connected especially around that area.

    I don’t eat meat, but even now I get flashbacks of people getting beat downs and shootings at the various burger joints in LA…the 90s, they were lovely.

    Have you heard about the tent cities in Ontario. This totally sucks.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20071221/lf_nm/usa_housing_social_dc_2

    Browne

  6. Funny you mention the Ontario tent city, I was at a b-day dinner and was learning just about it about 2 hours ago. Why did the AP article tease me with no actual tent city pics? Now I gotta take my lazy ass out there to see it myself, know the directions?

    And yeah, i got tons of burger joint stories, including when I took a stray while waiting for my In and Out burger in La Puente. The fragments still hurt when it gets cold, like today. I have seen 3 shootings and one stabbing at or near the In and Out on Amar and hacienda in LP. I remember going to J&S in Montebello with a friend, who ended up getting jumped and pulled out his gun (which I was unaware he had) while on the floor and started firing. The place was packed, yet he didnt hit one person, genius in the making right there.

    Speaking of fatburger, anyone remember when neighborhood crips ran shiz right down the street from the original one on Western? I saw a lot of crazy stuff there too, but we were cool with them so it was like a show unfolding. Right down the street from the snooty fox….

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