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11-30-08, 02:49 PM #1
California Deputy's Widow Pleads Witnesses to Come Forward
Facing her first Thanksgiving without her husband, the widow of an L.A. County sheriff's deputy who was shot outside his Cypress Park home appealed Wednesday for help in bringing his killer to justice.
With tears in her eyes and accompanied by her three young children, Celeste Escalante pleaded for anyone who witnessed or knows anything about the August slaying of Juan Abel Escalante to contact Los Angeles police detectives or use the department's anonymous tip system.
She said that even the most minor detail could make a difference.
"I know somebody saw. I know somebody heard it," said Escalante, the deputy's childhood sweetheart. "Please call and let them know what you know. Let the kids and I and my in-laws have closure . . . so we can know whoever did this is brought to justice."
Los Angeles Police Department and sheriff's investigators had initially focused their investigation on Escalante's work at the Men's Central Jail, where he guarded the most dangerous inmates, including members of the Mexican Mafia. Investigators have combed Escalante's personal life for clues. But they are now zeroing in on the possibility that Escalante was slain by local gang members -- perhaps by assailants who were not even aware that he was a lawman.
Authorities are especially interested in the long-running feud between the notorious Avenues Gang and the rival Cypress Park gang, whose territory includes the northeast Los Angeles neighborhood where Escalante was killed.
Investigators know that finding new witnesses four months after the killing is difficult, especially when there's a risk of reprisals from gang members.
Standing in a neighborhood where gang roots run deep and allegiance carries over from generation to generation, Escalante's wife told reporters that detectives had assured her that anyone with information could contact the LAPD anonymously.
"Don't be afraid not to say something because you are scared of retaliation," she said.
By calling, she said, tipsters will allow her three children to know that "our justice system works."
"Abel lived and breathed for his kids. It is hard," she said, with Alexander Abel, 10, Marissa, 8, and Julian, 3. She said they ask, "When is Dad coming from the cemetery?"
"How do I explain to you Dad is not coming home," Escalante said.
The holidays are the most difficult, she said. It was tough to smile without her husband as her children went trick-or-treating on Halloween. Thanksgiving will be another test.
"This family is suffering greatly at this time," said LAPD Deputy Chief Charlie Beck, standing with Escalante and her children to announce a $95,000 reward for information leading to a prosecution in the case.
The deputy was preparing to leave for work from his parents' Thorpe Avenue home Aug. 2 when someone came up from behind and shot him in the head as he was adjusting a child's car seat in the family's car.
Sheriff Lee Baca said the crime will only be solved with the public's help. "We are looking for people to do the right thing," he said.
Councilman Ed Reyes, who helped arrange the reward, said there was no greater gift to this family this holiday season than to come forward and bring the killer of a loving husband and father of three to justice. "We can make a difference," he said.
Anyone with information about the slaying is asked to call Dets. Thomas Mathew or Steven Eguchi at (213) 485-2531. After hours or on weekends, calls may be directed to a 24-hour, toll-free line at (877) LAPD-24-7 or by text messaging CRIMES (274637) and beginning the message with the letters LAPD. Tipsters may also submit information on the LAPD website. All tips will remain anonymous.
11-30-08, 03:55 PM #2
Sure hope they find the scum sucking chicken shit lowlife that did this. May every day of his worthless life be filled with agony and dispair till he steals his last breath of air on earth."An Unarmed man can only flee from evil, and evil is not overcome by fleeing from it." Jeff Cooper
Some people are meant to be the police......Some people are meant to call the police!!!
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" I believe that forgiving them (Terrorist) is God's function. OUR job is to arrange the meeting."
General Norman Schwartzkopf
Not all Muslims are Terrorists, but all Terrorists are Muslim.
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11-30-08, 06:20 PM #3Chief Wheaties PisserVerified LEO
- Join Date
- Just outside Latteland
- Rep Power
In a new society where not ratting out is a new higher social order, she wil be waiting for some time.
Love the way our society is devolving into.
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