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After Shooting Death of 4-Month-Old Baby, A Plea for Help

Councilmember Tony Cardenas next to a photo of victim Andrew Garcia | Photo by Zach Behrens/LAist
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It was baby Andrew Garcia's baptismal celebration the morning he was shot and killed*. Earlier and just a few blocks away at a city park, a large party was held for the 4-month-old child.

It happened around around 1 a.m. on Sunday on Kittridge Street in Van Nuys. Andrew, his mother and a friend, who was pregnant, were sitting in a parked car outside a family friend's house. The friend, 28-year-old Anna Contreras, was feeding Andrew while the father and Eric Ramirez, 18, stood outside. Two young men walking by got into a verbal exchange with them, which escalated with several shot gun rounds fired at the family. Ramirez and Contreras, were injured, but are expected to survive. And while Contreras' unborn baby was unharmed, Garcia died with a bullet to the head.

"While all deaths are tragic, this strikes an especially tragic cord on a life," said Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa at a press conference this afternoon. "As we mourn the loss of innocent life here, we must reaffirm our steadfast commitment to fighting gang crime and gun violence with more resilience, with more determination and with even greater resources.... the bullets unleashed yesterday [will not] go without consequence."