BY LUCY GUANUNA
ECHO PARK — Police and city officials met with residents at the scene of a recent homicide to ask for help in finding the suspects who shot down a man on his bike.
The impromptu community gathering that included Councilman Mitch O’Farrell took place late Friday at the corner of Mohawk and Montana streets where 36-year-old William Perea was fatally shot while riding his bike the night of October 17. No suspects have been identified. LAPD Northeast Division Captain Phillip Smith was present to give residents a description of the homicide in hopes of prompting more community involvement.
“We would like to get more information from the community, but we’re not getting anything at this time,” said Smith in a phone interview.
Perea was riding his bike southbound on Mohawk when a car drove by and fired about 4 to 5 gunshots. Three, 9-millimeter casings were recovered at the scene. Perea was hit with one fatal shot while on his bicycle. He fell over at the northwest corner of Mohawk and Montana. He was pronounced dead at the scene. It was the third Echo Park murder of the year, according to the L.A. Times Homicide Report.
Smith said Perea had been arrested for narcotics violations and was a transient at the time of the shooting. The shooting could have been a random act or it could have been retaliation for an unpaid drug payment, Smith said.
At the neighborhood gathering, residents were also able to voice their concerns about other public safety issues, including the recent uptick in gang crime and graffiti as well reckless driving in Echo Park’s narrow streets.
“We have had some shootings, but it hasn’t been to the extent that we need to put a task force together … to try to deal with it,” said Smith.
Although the shooting happened in an area with active gangs and tagging, the homicide has not been identified as gang-related at this time.
“The investigation is ongoing and we are investigating all aspects of the case,” said Smith.
- More Echo Park stories
- Got a story, tip, question or photo to share? Submit it here
Lucy Guanuna is a freelance reporter who has covered a variety of issues, including business, education and social justice movements in her native Los Angeles. Her work has been published in the Daily Sundial, L.A. Activist, and the San Fernando Valley Business Journal.
Can’t get enough Echo Park news? Sign up for The Eastsider’s Echo Park Weekly email newsletter. Echo Park Weekly features EP-centric stories, tidbits, advice, observations, information as well as the week’s top news.
Jesús Sanchez, Publisher
Please fill out every field
Problem with the form? Let us know