Civil rights groups have launched campaigns to demand that the name of the Los Angeles police officer who caused the death of Chilean teenager Valentina Orellana Peralta be revealed by shooting a suspect and that the officer face criminal charges for the events, while the family of the victim tries to raise funds to meet the expenses derived from the tragedy.
The calls are focused on Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón. “(Gascón) has made a great promise: He is going to examine police misconduct, but especially the excessive use of deadly force by the LAPD (Los Angeles Police Department),” said Earl Ofari Hutchinson, president of Los Angeles Urban. Policy Roundtable. “This is a test for Gascón, the first real test,” he added.
In a statement sent to EFE today, Hutchinson indicated that "the use of deadly force by the LAPD has been a subject of debate and controversy for a long time."
Other organizations participating in the campaign include National Action Network West, Coalition Against Police Abuse, Project Islamic Hope, Justice for Mark Dymally, and the Women's Leadership Project.
The officer who fired the shots that killed 14-year-old Valentina Orellana in an incident Dec. 23 at the Burlington Coat Factory in North Hollywood has not been identified but the LAPD said he is on paid leave. while a case review is underway.
Likewise, the Justice For Valentina online campaign has been launched to “demand that the police recording (of the incident) be released (the LAPD did so on December 27), that the recording from the Burlington store cameras be released, and that manslaughter charges be brought against the officers who negligently opened fire and killed an innocent 14-year-old girl.”
The video released by the LAPD records the actions of the officers who went to the store in response to alert calls about a possible assault with a deadly weapon.
Upon arrival, officers began a search of the scene, during which they located a woman bleeding from multiple injuries and, a short distance away, a suspect. One of the policemen fired three shots with his automatic rifle at the man, who died at the scene.
The preliminary investigation determined that a girl (Valentina) was with her mother in a dressing room whose wall was directly behind the suspect, out of sight of the officers, and that the minor died from one of the shots fired by the officer. .
The video was posted on the LAPD's YouTube page after LAPD Chief Michel Moore promised transparency in the investigation of the incident.
The suspect was identified as Daniel Elena López, 24 years old. The injured woman was taken to a hospital and has not been identified.
Meanwhile, relatives of the minor have started a fundraiser on the GoFundMe site so that the immediate family "feels as comfortable as possible and is able to plan Valentina's funeral without limitations."
“The Chilean family is dealing with travel costs, funeral costs, potentially legal expenses and other types of unforeseen events. There is no amount of money that can bring our Valentina back, or to comfort her mother, father, older sister, and an entire grieving family, but we want her immediate family to be free from any financial constraints that may cause this grieving process even more difficult”, they indicated.
So far the campaign has raised $43,738 of the $85,000 it aims to raise.
The family asked for justice in the minor's case on Tuesday. “Justice for my daughter. Let the one who has to fall fall," Juan Pablo Orellana, Valentina's father, said at a press conference.
The man, who traveled from Santiago (Chile) to Los Angeles, said he was devastated by the loss and that he will not rest until justice is achieved. He stressed that Valentina considered the United States "the safest country in the world, the country of opportunities."
“We were together in a dressing room looking at clothes for Christmas. We hear screams. We sat hugging each other on a seat praying. When (suddenly) something hit my daughter Valentina and threw us to the floor, ”said the teenager's mother, Soledad Orellana, sobbing on her part at a press conference on Tuesday.
"Seeing a son or daughter die in one's arms is one of the greatest and deepest pain that a human being can imagine," added the immigrant, who had arrived six months ago with her youngest daughter in Los Angeles. .