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Funds set up for family of girl slain at South Gate high school

October 5, 2011 |  3:16 pm


Two funds have been established to help defray burial and other costs for the family of 17-year-old Cindi Santana, who died Friday after being stabbed at a high school in South Gate.

An online contribution site, authorized by the family, has been set up by family friends.

The South Gate Police Officers' Assn. has established a separate memorial fund with the family’s consent. Donations can be mailed to the South Gate Police Officers' Assn., c/o Cindi Santana, 8620 California Ave., South Gate, CA 90280. The association can be contacted at (323) 573-2632 or (562) 254-0411.

South Gate police initially arrested Abraham Lopez, 18, for allegedly making threats Sept. 25. Lopez was released Sept. 27 after the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office declined to prosecute for lack of evidence.

On Sept. 30, he reportedly sneaked onto South East High School -- he and the victim were seniors at the school -- and allegedly attacked Santana after an argument at lunchtime. A student, a dean and a police officer who came to Santana’s aid also were injured.

John Deasy, superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District, criticized South Gate police Monday for not informing the school about either Lopez’s arrest or release.

But some parents also criticized the school for not taking more precautions -- Santana’s mother had alerted the school’s principal about the alleged threats and Lopez’s arrest. The South Gate Police Department has declined comment.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department is handling the investigation.


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-- Howard Blume