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L.A.P.D. Provides Safety Tips To Public After Fatal Shooting of 23-Year-Old Man

Updated on January 13, 2018

Advice and Information About Avoiding Becoming A Victim

Although I know I'm a wimp for this, I'm always personally affected by news of a young person being killed, especially when it occurs in my surrounding community.

As a Southern California native, it should seem natural for me to be desensitized to such occurrences, but for some reason, it's an issue I could never get used to, regardless of the number of times I hear of it happening, and especially when the victim is young. In my personal experience, people age 25 and younger tend to be the most susceptible to being victimized in violent crimes, especially when resources aren't readily available to them. As a long-standing resident of Los Angeles, I myself have had many close calls during my own young adulthood once too often.

L.A.P.D. Report of Recent Shooting

On January 9, Officer Tony Hyong Im of the Los Angeles Police Department, provided tips to the public regarding how others can avoid becoming victims, upon the recent shooting death of a young man in Sylmar, California.

The incident occurred on January 6, at around 9:45 p.m. on the 12200 block of Van Nuys Blvd., in the Sylmar area, according to a news release posted by the L.A.P.D. website.

The release states that Foothill patrol officers responded to a radio call of "shots fired." Arriving officers reportedly found the victim, identified as 23-year-old Angel Francis Torres, Jr., of Sylmar, lying on the ground in the rear alley. Responding paramedics pronounced Mr. Torres dead at the scene. Officer Herrera of L.A.P.D., reports that no new information about the motives behind the shooting is currently available.

I spoke with Officer Tony Hyong Im about my concerns, and he offered tips that may be useful to readers in the way of helping them and their loved ones to avoid being victimized.

Safety Tips

"This incident happened at night, in a dark, dangerous area," Officer Im stated, "so it's important to avoid being out at nighttime, especially in alleys, because this is how people are often reported being struck by gunfire."

Im also suggests that individuals avoid bringing their mobile phones or any other items of value with them, so in cases in which they are robbed, their losses aren't as great; yet, mobile phones, when not used properly, may potentially cause one to become engrossed and easily distracted.

"It is true that we often need our cell phones to use in cases of emergencies, or to communicate with family, and so on," Im said, "but because nowadays people often use their phones to play video games, etc., it can be easy to walk around with your head in a cell while someone with a gun is walking behind you and trailing you. It's why it's always important to remain aware of your surroundings."

Resources For Families And Youth

"Programs and agencies available to young people and families include the lapd.cadet program, Boys and Girls Clubs, and high school sports," Im said. "There are also Big Brother and Big Sister organizations. I also encourage families to learn more about the Neighborhood Watch Programs in their areas and to encourage their loved ones to be proactive from childhood in being aware of remaining safe from criminal activity in their communities. When you're tied up in being involved in providing and giving back to your community, you don't have time to get in trouble."

The LAPD Cadets website reads, "The Cadet Program is designed to offer youth an opportunity to develop skills that will help them throughout their lives, while working with one of the finest law enforcement agencies in the country. The Program is offered at each of the 21 community police stations across the city, as well as at seven specialized divisions."

The website adds: "The purpose of the L.A.P.D. Cadet Program is to help instill discipline, leadership, academic excellence and life skills in all youth empower students to maximize their personal, scholastic and their life potential. It has four principle goals:

1) To recruit young men and women who are interested in building positive relationships between police and the youth of our communities.

2) To provide a forum in which young people can provide community service while working with law enforcement.

3) To provide character-training public-speaking and academic instruction that prepares young people for their future.

4) To offer physical training that will result in improved physical fitness for all who participate in the program."

To learn more, visit:

Information about crime data from 2010 to present is available at

If you are a youth in crisis who lives in California, contact the California Youth Crisis Line at 800-843-5200.

L.A.P.D. encourages anyone who has more information about Mr. Torres' murder to contact Valley Bureau Homicide Detective Peteque at 818-374-1934. During non-business hours or on weekends, call 1-877-LAPD-24-7 (1-877-527-3247). Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS (800-222-8477) or, or and click on "Anonymous Web Tips" under the "Get Involved - Crime Stoppers" menu to submit an online tip. Or download the "P3 Tips" mobile application and select the L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers.

I hope these suggestions offer some small way of turning a tragic incident into a positive one. As a reminder to everyone, using common sense, remaining vigilant, and increasing one's strong social system with a network of supportive resources can go a long way in protecting oneself and others from crime. Everyone be well, and be safe.


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