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15-year-old shooting victim was smart, caring and had no gang ties, family members say

Map shows location of Wednesday's shooting in purple, as well as nearby homicides, in red, since January 2007. Click for more details on The Times’ interactive Homicide Report. A 15-year-old youth who was fatally shot in Harbor City this week was a smart and caring young man who valued his family and had no gang ties, relatives of the victim said.

Ery Valdez was shot several times about 11.50 p.m. Wednesday in the 25400 block of Senator Avenue after an argument with an unidentified person, Los Angeles police said. Valdez, who was shot in the upper torso and legs, died at the scene.

“He didn’t deserve this,” Kathy Valdez, 17, the victim’s sister, said in a telephone interview Thursday. “No matter for what reason, he didn’t deserve this.”

Valdez said her brother attended Cooper High School and described him as an honest young man who “wasn’t in a gang of any kind.”

“He was a sweet guy,” said Valdez. “He cared for his family and friends.”

There are no details available of the killer, who fled, authorities said.

At least 22 homicides have been reported within two miles of the shooting scene since January 2007, according to coroner’s data collected for The Times’ interactive Homicide Report.

Minerva Valdez, the victim’s mother, was too distraught to talk Thursday, according to Kathy Valdez.

“My mother is heartbroken,” Valdez said. “That was her little boy, her little man. We don’t have a man around. He was the man of the house.”

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-- Ann M. Simmons

Map: Shows location of Wednesday's shooting in purple, as well as 22 other homicides, in red, since January 2007. Credit: Homicide Report

 
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