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'I lost my only brother'

May 6, 2008 | 11:00 am

                         Roberto_perez25

It has been a week since the fatal shooting of 25-year-old Roberto Perez .

The Latino man was shot to death at the intersection of 41st Street and South Vermont Avenue across from Manual Arts High School in Exposition Park about 7:45 p.m. Friday, May 2. Family members said Perez was the second-oldest of four children.

He was from Mexico and had a 3-year-old son. He had dropped out of high school to work full time as a carpenter so he could help the family with rent and bills. He was also supporting his son. Neighbors told the family that their son was well-mannered and that many of the area children admired Perez.  "He was a big kid," his sister, Blanca Perez, 16, said.

"I lost my only brother," said older brother Agustin Perez, Roberto_perez_table27, looking at the hardwood floor. 

According to Det. Frank Alvelais of LAPD's South Bureau Homicide, Perez was walking to the store when a vehicle pulled up. Someone got out and shot him several times.

Family said he and his older brother had been visiting their cousin, who owns a carpet store a few blocks from the killing. They said Perez was on his way to buy beer when he was shot twice in the back and once in the head. A youth ran to the store and told Agustin what had happened. Agustin said he ran to the corner and found his brother lying on the sidewalk, already dead.

"I took off my white shirt and covered him up so no one would see him," he said. Agustin then ran to his parents' house around the corner.

Rober_perez_memorial2_4Blanca, the youngest sister, said she was returning from a college campus field trip when she learned her brother had been shot. She saw the police and yellow tape, but thought it was for a car accident. Agustin told her that their brother had been shot. She ran to the corner. "I couldn't breath," she said playing with her golden chain. "I couldn't believe it."

Family members are seeking donations for funeral services.

From top to bottom: A picture of Perez. A memorial shrine in the living room table. Family members have placed a slice of pizza aside for Perez. To the left, a second memorial shrine located just a street away.

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