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Joanna Espinoza, 15

Joanna Espinoza, a 15-year-old Latina, was shot and killed Wednesday, April 23 in the 11900 block of South Wilmington Avenue in Willowbrook, according to Los Angeles County coroner’s records.

Espinoza was standing at the bottom of a staircase of a two-story apartment complex with a man about 11 p.m. when she was approached by a Latino, said Lt. Eddie Hernandez with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

Espinoza and the gunman exchanged words, but it is unknown what was said before he pulled out a handgun and fired a round at the girl, Hernandez said.

The gunman fled in an unknown direction. Espinoza was taken to a hospital where she was pronounced dead at 11:24 p.m., according to coroner’s records.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Sheriff’s Department Homicide Bureau at (323) 890-5500. Those who wish to remain anonymous can call Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-8477.

-- Nicole Santa Cruz

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