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Dametrius Hakeem Thomas, 25

Dametrius Hakeem Thomas, a 25-year-old black man, was fatally shot on Saturday, Oct. 6, near the intersection of Denker Avenue and West 102nd Street in the South Los Angeles community of Westmont, according to Los Angeles County coroner’s records. 

The circumstances of the shooting are unclear, said Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Lt. Rodney Moore, and investigators are still trying to pinpoint the location.

What they do know is that Thomas was dropped off at the Los Angeles County fire station at West 108th Street and Normandie Avenue at 10:16 p.m. with a gunshot wound to his torso, Moore said.  

Thomas was taken to a nearby hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 11:17 p.m., according to coroner’s records. The cause of death is listed as a gunshot wound to the abdomen. 

The people who dropped Thomas off left without identifying themselves or explaining what happened, Moore said. 

According to coroner’s records, Thomas’ last city of residence was Knoxville, Tenn., where he graduated from Fulton High School in 2011. He was heralded as a running back on the Fulton varsity football team and the following year was on the roster of the Joliet Junior College football team in Joliet, Ill., where he also played as a running back.

It’s not clear where Thomas went from there.   

In an interview with the Knoxville News Sentinel’s Prep Xtra during his junior year in 2009, Thomas, known as “Big D,” confessed his love for McDonald’s hamburgers and fries, and said he wasn’t intimidated about becoming the school’s main running back as a sophomore. 

“I’m not scared of nothing,” Thomas was quoted as saying. “Why be scared? What's there to be scared of?”

Moore said investigators don’t know why Thomas was in Los Angeles, or how long he had been here. “We haven’t gotten a lot of cooperation,” Moore said. “We don’t know what led up to it or what was going on prior to the shooting…. It’s a big whodunit.”

Anyone with information is asked to call the sheriff’s Homicide Bureau at (323) 890-5500. Those wishing to remain anonymous should call Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-8477.  

Contact the Homicide Report. Follow @latimeshomicide on Twitter.

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