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Homicide Report: 11 killings last week in L.A. County, three were minors

June 16, 2010 |  7:00 am
Map shows 10 of 11 homicides in Los Angeles County for the week ending June 7. Click for more information on The Times' interactive Homicide Report
Coroner officials reported 11 killings in Los Angeles County between June 7 and Sunday morning, bringing the year-to-date total to 312, according to data collected for The Times' Homicide Report database. By this time last year 343 people had been killed in the county, with 420 killed in 2008.

Two of the shootings happened within minutes and blocks of each other in Exposition Park; however investigators have yet to determine if the incidents were related.

On Tuesday afternoon, Raymond Gage, 41, was sitting in a car about 5:20 p.m. when a person approached and shot him, said Ed Winter, spokesman for the coroner's office.

Authorities were called and Gage was taken to California Hospital Medical Center where he died at 7 p.m., according to coroner's records.

Five minutes after Gage was shot, Rodney Nelson, 34, was fatally wounded about two blocks east from where Gage was hit.

Nelson was walking on the sidewalk about 5:25 p.m. when a black male approached and shot him, investigators said. He also was taken to California Hospital Medical Center where he died a little more than 20 minutes later, Winter said.

No arrests have been made in connection with either homicide, authorities said.

In addition to the two killings so close together, an infant, a kindergartner and a 15-year old boy were all the victims of homicides in recent days. 

On June 9, De Jon Merriex, a 2-month-old baby, was found not breathing and taken to County-USC Medical Center where he was pronounced dead at 7:25 p.m., Winter said.

According to preliminary information provided by the coroner's office, the baby was dirty, thin and had scratches and small scars on his body. Also, there was a red mark on his neck and possible bruises to his torso.

Winter said the place of injury still remains unknown and the cause of death has been deferred. Results will not be available for another six to eight weeks.

Two days after De Jon's death, Gabriel Lopez, 15, died from injuries suffered in a fight two days earlier in El Monte.

Detective Martin Rodriguez, who is handling the investigation for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department homicide bureau, said Gabriel got into a fist fight with a 17-year-old male Wednesday afternoon that had gang overtones.

During the fight, Gabriel sustained injuries that caused him to fall into a coma. There were several witnesses to the fight and it was unclear who instigated it, Rodgriguez said. The case is under investigation, he said, and the teenager who fought with Gabriel has not been arrested.

Mireya_mccall_pic On Sunday, the body of five-year old Mireya McCall was discovered in a trash bag in a closet in Compton. According to preliminary information provided by the coroner's office, Mireya suffered sharp force trauma to the neck.

Her mother had reported her daughter missing in the morning and told authorities where to look for Mireya. Officials have arrested Mireya's uncle, Julian Carter, 25, in connection with her killing.

Carter was charged Tuesday with his niece's murder, according to the Los Angeles County District attorney's office. He is currently being held at the Twin Towers jail in downtown in lieu of $1.08 million bail. If convicted, Carter faces up to 26 years in state prison.

The Times' Homicide Report provides an interactive map and database of all homicides in Los Angeles County reported by the coroner since Jan. 1, 2007.

-- Sarah Ardalani


Map shows 10 of 11 homicides in Los Angeles County for the week ending June 7. Source: Homicide Report

Photo: Mireya McCall. Credit: Liz O. Baylen / Los Angeles Times