NORWALK (CBSLA.com) — An emotional vigil was held Saturday night in Norwalk for a man who several months ago was gunned down while trying to stop a man from stealing a skateboard from a kid.
Jimmy Medrano was considered a Good Samaritan and a hero.
The incident happened several months ago — November 2016 to be exact — but with an arrest in the case earlier this week, friends and family wanted to have something to feel positive about.
“He’s gone for us but he has a group of people that just keep him alive,” said his older sister Vanessa Medrano.
She spend five months never knowing if her brother’s killer would be brought to justice.
Tonight, she and other family and friends gathered to recognize the profound move in the case.
KCAL9’s Jennifer Kastner was there.
This week detectives told them they believe they found and arrested the man responsible for Jimmy’s death.
“And I tell Jimmy in my prayers that you’re free, Jimmy. they caught him. he’s in jail,” said his grandfather Mike Ontiveros.
“I’m happy. I’m happy they got him, because he was a coward,” says Terry Ontiveros, Jimmy’s grandmother.
The vigil was held at the same skate park where 26-year-old Jimmy was gunned down, just days before Thanksgiving.
His family says he was in the park helping a little boy learn to skate. A man came up and tried to steal the boy’s skateboard.
Jimmy stopped the man but not before being shot. He died while protecting the boy.
“Definitely my brother was my hero, he’s a hero. That’s what gives me so much peace at night,” his sister said.
“Jimmy stood up to this guy…ya know a skateboard… $19. And you took a life,” his grandfather said.
The family is still working to find peace. They know they will have to deal with this day by day.
“I tell him every morning, good morning and every night [I say] goodnight, Jimmy. He would not leave the house without saying, ‘Love Nana’,” says his grandmother.
The LA Coynty Sheriff’s Department confirms a suspect has been taken into custody.
The suspect’s name is Lester Sandoval. He will be charged with Medrano’s murder.
Interestingly, authorities said the suspect was actually apprehended in January but the Medrano family was only notified this past week.
Officials blame a “miscommunication” for the family not learning of the arrest just after it happened.