By Matthew Roscoe • 28 December 2021 • 12:03
LAPD release bodycam footage after a teenage girl was killed just days before Christmas. Credit: YouTube
THE LAPD has released the bodycam footage from an incident that led to an innocent teenage girl being killed just days before Christmas after officers opened fire on a suspect at the Burlington Coat Factory in North Hollywood.
14-year-old Valentina Orellana-Peralta died after being accidentally shot by Los Angeles Police Department officers when a bullet struck her through drywall as they tried to take down a suspect who was alleged to have assaulted a woman earlier on Thursday, December 23.
Now, bodycam footage posted on force’s YouTube channel – as an “expedited critical incident” video at the direction of LAPD Chief Michel Moore – shows officers responding to reports that a man was attacking people in the store.
The man, since identified as Daniel Elena Lopez, was shot at by police who believed he had provoked a second attack with a deadly weapon, however, according to a CBS Los Angeles correspondent, police have confirmed that the suspect had a bike lock/chain and did not have a gun.
The footage shows the LAPD entering the store and opening fire at Lopez, who is hit by a bullet and died at the scene.
The video also shows how close the changing rooms were to the incident, which Valentina Orellana-Peralta and her mother were hiding in.
“At this preliminary phase of the investigation, it is believed that the victim was struck by one of the rounds fired by an officer at the suspect,” police captain Stacy Spell said in the posted video.
Captain Spell added: “We at the LAPD would like to express our most heartfelt condolences and profound regret for the loss of this innocent victim, Valentina Orellana-Peralta.
“There are no words that can describe the depth of the sorrow we feel at this tragic outcome.”
The footage on YouTube shows a seemingly disorientated Lopez initially spotted on CCTV walking into the store with a bike while clutching the lock before attacking a woman on the escalator who managed to escape his grip.
The CCTV footage shows the deceased suspect leaving the store for around 90 seconds before returning to beat another woman with the bike lock.
Lopez then tried to drag her towards the dressing rooms while she was covered in blood.
This is when you see the officers open fire with the bullet believed to have hit the floor before bouncing through the drywall and striking Valentina Orellana-Peralta.
The case is currently under investigation by the California Department Of Justice, which has been asked to look at the officer-involved shooting of the unarmed civilian, according to Sky News.
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Originally from the UK, Matthew is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]
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