How immigrants are redefining 'American' in Southern California

Two other murder victims near USC this year, both young men of color

Erika Aguilar/KPCC

Police tape at the scene of the murder of two USC students near campus, April 11, 2012

The intensive news coverage of the murder of two international graduate students from China this week near the University of Southern California is understandable: two young people, Wu Ying and Qu Ming, both 23, struck down senselessly in what seemed like a random carjacking or robbery attempt; the fact that both were foreign students far from home, possibly less than familiar with the dangers of their environs; the juxtaposition of a high-cost private university with its working-class surroundings; and the safety concerns for other students arising in the aftermath.

There have been other young people killed near USC in recent months, though not students. This week, as police described the crime situation surrounding USC, they mentioned there had been four murders in the area this year. There have been more homicide deaths in the larger area surrounding USC this year, but the two shooting deaths below were those closest to campus as seen in the Los Angeles Times' Homicide Report, which maps homicide deaths in the city. One victim was Latino, the other was black. Both were young.