La Crisis: 99 cent Lives

photo courtesy of the Los Angeles Times website

If you didn’t live in Los Angeles during the early 90s, count your lucky stars. It was a rough time to live in my beloved city, there was a crack epidemic, people were in dire straits and I knew folks that were either getting shot or doing the shooting. And then there were the riots…I’ve been thinking a lot about those times lately, the economy is bad and that means people start getting desperate. Two events today are reminiscent of those dark times.

I was at Figueroa Produce today on York and Figueroa stocking up on my veggies and Mediterranean products when the police rush up in a patrol car, sirens wailing to the nearby 99 cent store. An employee or guard has a guy on the ground outside the front door. The police order him to stand up and to put his hands on his head. There’s an ambulance there. Did he shoot someone? And two firetrucks. Could one man cause so much trouble?

I remark on the drama to the young clerk at Figueroa Produce, she shrugs and says “You know the economy’s getting bad when they start robbing 99 cent stores.” Ah, from the mouth of babes, indeed.

Tonight in the industrial section of Lincoln Heights, a woman was found shot in her car. Her life was worth a 41 second clip on KCAL news. The story was being reported from a helicopter. Women in our neighborhood are not worth a newsvan.

More from ABC 7:

A woman was found shot dead in an alley in Lincoln Heights on Monday.

The victim was identified as Brianna Hanna.

Police said Hanna was sitting in a white compact car near Humboldt Street and West Avenue 31 when someone walked up and shot her just after 7 p.m.

Police believe Hanna’s murder may have been gang-related.

Several people had called police after hearing gunshots, and one witness saw a man running from the scene.

Just to clarify, the area where this happened is a residential street and not an alley. It is near the industrial area of Lincoln Heights and a few blocks from the fancy new artist lofts.

8 thoughts on “La Crisis: 99 cent Lives

  1. “The Invisible People”, not worth the gas of a newsvan, just another dead Mexican on the Eastside.

    One time years ago, I got caught in a massive freeway jam on the 10, when I creeped up as far as the Soto St. overpass there was the body of a heavy black woman, face down, bent forward at the knees, butt up into the air, in the trash and ivy of the center divider. Four or Five cop cars, some flares, people rubbernecking, not even the LA familiar, yellow plastic tarp covering her body.
    Never heard or read a thing about what happened to her, who dumped her body there, how did she die, did she have a family that cared about her, did they even find out what her name was?

  2. Oscar Zeta Acosta, “The Brown Buffalo” speaking about the death of a young Chicano by the police, the invisible people of the Eastside who he reffered to as the Cockroach People.
    This is a rare recently discovered video that was taken by an undercover cop at Acosta’s Reading of his book “The Revolt of the Cockroach People”, many years ago.


  3. “May have been gang-related.” Who didn’t see that bit of speculative “info” coming? Isn’t it just an unsolved murder case?

    I say we start calling all those latest psycho shootings “suburban-angst related” cuz you know, they might be.

  4. of course her life is only valued at 41 seconds. they have to make time to tell you about all the must know celebrity gossip, where you can find cheap deals at name brand stores and how you should go on their website and sign up for email updates of breaking news. The more and more I see how major media works and how everything is done, it sickens me to be even a part in that sometimes. That’s why I stick to writing.

  5. You know the one happy thing I can take from this post is that Figueroa Produce exists and appears to be doing pretty well despite the economic conditions.

    Everyone I know on Neighborhood Councils was always saying things like, “When is Trader Joes going to come here?!”

    Screw that, Figueroa Produce did their homework and they got this neighborhood down pretty well in terms of un-met grocery needs.

  6. Actually, Fig Produce has stuff that Trader Joe’s doesn’t like veganaise, bulghur, whole wheat pitas and pistachio candies. (Yeah, that’s what I buy there.)
    I think their produce could be fresher but they have a decent selection. I mostly like the middle-eastern products and their vegetarian foods selection.
    Some Northeast LA people (ok, the ones that write on the NELA list) are crazy about where they shop for food, like obsessed. It’s weird. They flipped out when the Albertson’s turned into the Superior Market. And were double flipped out when the Superior market had tons of people streaming in to shop there.

  7. I was at the meeting with the Arroyo Seco NC when Superior’s (ex-linebacker) P.R. team tried to calm everyone down about their store opening.

    Mt. Washington people were PISSED! It was funny, because they all lined up for the bribe of free cake and food that the Superior people brought for everyone who attended. I took pictures, but chose not to be bribed.

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