August 9 marks the one-year anniversary of the death of 14-year-old Boyle Heights resident Jesse Romero during an LAPD officer-involved shooting and the teen’s family, friends and community supporters plan to gather Tuesday evening for a vigil in the teen’s memory.
The vigil will take place at 7:30 p.m. near the corner of Breed Street and César Chávez Avenue, the spot where Romero was shot by being pursued by officers who responded to a call about gang-related vandalism.
Police say that they heard a gunshot before they fired at Romero. A gun was recovered at the scene. Despite conflicting reports from witnesses –one reportedly saw Romero fire while another saw the boy pull a gun out and throw it against a fence– the Los Angeles Police Commission ruled last month that the shooting was justified.
In June, the teen’s family filed a wrongful death suit against the city and the officer involved in the shooting. In the suit filed in Federal court, Jesse James Romero’s parents allege the police violated their son’s civil rights, used excessive force and denied him timely medical care.