WILMINGTON (CBS) — Two families are mourning the loss of two 16-year-olds who were killed in a drive-by shooting.
Meldrick A. Melgoza and Carolina Ramirez, were killed Sunday night, coroner’s officials said.
“They looked so happy. He was hugging my daughter and they were saying, ‘I love you’, and, ‘I love you more,'” said a woman whose daughter had talked to the couple an hour before the shooting. She did not want to be identified.
The shooting was reported at 7:10 p.m. in the 500 block of Bay View Avenue, near Wilmington Avenue, the Los Angeles Police Department said. Someone in a car pulled up to the two teens and opened fire.
The suspect shot Melgoza first, said a nearby resident. Ramirez then ran to a parked car and tried to hide underneath. The girl said police found Ramirez’s body underneath the car with gunshot wounds to her chest and legs.
A nearby resident said he heard about 13 shots fired.
Both victims were pronounced dead on the scene when paramedics arrived, officials said.
Police said it was unclear what motivated the crime.
It happened in an area of Wilmington that has recently been plagued by violence. Eight people have been killed this year alone in the 2.5-mile-radius surrounding the site where the teens were killed. Since 2007, there have been 53 homicides in the area; Most have been drive-by shootings, though not all have been gang-related.
Police said they do not have enough information to release a description of the suspects.
No one standing at the crime scene was willing to go on camera with CBS2 reporter Dave Lopez to talk about the incident — one resident told him, “No, why? So, next time I’ll be on the floor dead too?”
Police have increased patrols in the area and put more detectives on the case. But, an LAPD source said that if no one is willing to talk that there wasn’t much they could do.
Anyone with information on the murders was urged to call the LAPD.