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Willowbrook winds up after fatal shootings

The Willowbrook community on Saturday battled the aftermath of deadly back-to-back shots: one involving a deputy shooting a black man on Friday afternoon and the other involving two teenagers found shot after an accident the night before.

As Los Angeles County Sheriff’s detectives investigated the shootings, tensions rose among many residents of the area as they struggled to deal with concerns about an outbreak of violent crime in their neighborhood southeast of downtown.

Throughout the day on Saturday, dozens of people gathered in front of the candlelight monument and rap music across the street from the normally quiet Mona Park and the neighborhood fence where 25-year-old Fred Williams III was shot and killed by a deputy sheriff after a brief chase.

Among them was Sandy Hendrix, 57, a neighbor who had known Williams since he was a young boy.

Nodding to the playground in the park and trying not to cry, she remembered, “I had pushed him on the swing right there. He loved him as much as I did. I never dreamed that one day he would be fatally shot by the police less than a block from this swing. “

Another was Lisa Smith, 52, a witness who referred to Williams as “my baby.”


“Many of us were just cooling off in the parking lot in the park when lawmakers rolled into a squad car,” she said. Assuming that their arrival was causing problems for the group, she said, “We started running.”

“A cop started running after Fred, and seconds later Fred disappeared around the corner,” she recalled. “I heard four shots then. Pop, pop, pop, pop. “

Sheriff’s officials say lawmakers are conducting a routine patrol of Mona Park when they spot a group of 10 to 15 people, one of whom is “holding a firearm.”

“When the suspect saw the deputies,” a department spokesman said, “he immediately fled the parking lot to the south.”

“One of the deputies is chasing the suspects along the alley and in the backyard of an uninvolved residence,” he said. “The suspect then engaged the deputy, pointing his firearm at him, at which point the person involved happened.”

Williams died at the scene, authorities said. A more automatic pistol was later found at the scene by investigative homicides.

At a nearby house where Williams lived, his father, Fred Williams Jr., 44, is tormented by an unanswered question: Why wouldn’t detectives explain to him the circumstances that led to his son’s fatal shooting?

“All they will tell me is that my son was shot once in the shoulder,” he said, his eyes filled with tears. “Was he shot in front or behind?” I do not know. They won’t tell me.

His son was released from prison a month ago after serving a robbery sentence, relatives said. He was looking forward to starting a new job as a security guard on Tuesday.

Williams’ father is not happy with the sheriff’s explanation.

“I was pushed in and out of the back seat of a 12-year-old police vehicle,” he said. “What else do you need to know?”

“We are killing the police,” he added. The big question is: When will it stop?

The problem in Willowbrook began around 11 p.m. on Thursday in block 12200 on Maple Avenue, when two male teenagers were shot and killed while driving down the street in search of an address, according to the sheriff’s department.

The victims were among five teenagers in the car when an attacker approached them and opened fire, authorities said.

The car collided with a vehicle parked at the intersection of Maple Avenue and East 124you Street. Responding lawmakers found two teenagers in the front seats dead at the scene. Three teenagers in the back are unharmed, authorities said.

“The car appears to have been shot several times,” said Sheriff’s Lieutenant Colonel Brandon Dean, and “both deceased appear to have been shot several times in the upper torso.”

The victims were identified by family members such as Millyon Colquitt, 16, and Jamele Hill, 17. Colquitt is 11 years old.you-grader at Centennial High School, and Hill is a senior at Gardena High School.

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