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News Release

Friday, May 26, 2000

Media Relations

Robbery Victim Shot in 77th Area

Friday, May 26, 2000

"Robbery Victim Shot and Killed"

Los Angeles: On May 26, 2000 at 10:00 a.m., Mr. Rene Blanco, a male Hispanic, 41 years of age and a resident of Los Angeles, accompanied by his wife, Arna Saravia, and their children, were in process of purchasing a car from American Auto Sales, located at 407 East Florence Avenue. Mr. Blanco selected a car, left a small deposit and went to the Bank of America at 6400 South Avalon Boulevard to get additional money ($7,500) to pay for the car.

At 10:30 a.m., Mr. Blanco and his wife withdrew the money and left the bank. The couple returned to the car lot and parked their van at the curb. A male African-American 22-23 years of age, 5' 10" to 6' tall, thin to medium build, with a long face, thin lips and black greasy or oily hair, wearing a white T-shirt and blue pants, exited the passenger side of a white possibly a Toyota Corolla, approached Ms. Saravia with a handgun and demanded her purse. The suspect pushed Ms. Saravia away with the handgun when Mr. Blanco stepped in front of Ms. Saravia.

The suspect fired the handgun, striking Mr. Blanco in the chest. Although wounded, Mr. Blanco chased the fleeing suspect. An unidentified citizen observed the shooting and pulled his car alongside Mr. Blanco. Mr. Blanco entered the citizen's car and stated "Let's get him," pointing at the fleeing suspect. A second suspect, described only as a male African-American, drove the white possible Toyota Corolla up to the first suspect. The first suspect entered the vehicle and they drove away.

The citizen returned Mr. Blanco to his van after he realized Mr. Blanco had been wounded. The citizen then drove Mr. Blanco and his family to Martin Luther King Jr. Hospital. Mr. Blanco later expired as a result of the gunshot wound.

This investigation is being handle by Robbery-Homicide Division. Anyone with information regarding this crime should contact Detectives Jack Giroud or Otis Marlowe at (213) 485-2511 during regular working hours or (213) 485-3261 after hours or on weekends.

For Release 2:00 pm PDT
May 26, 2000