The Los Angeles District Attorney's office has charged a 15-year-old in the killing of 1-year-old Angel Cortez (above).
Donald Ray Dokins, 15, was charged Thursday with murder and attempted murder in a shooting that killed 1-year-old Angel Cortez on June 4. Mauro Cortez, Angel's father, was holding the boy in his arms as he stood outside a house with a group of people in Watts. Prosecutors say Dokins rode up on a bike and shot a handgun several times towards the group before speeding off.
Mauro was injured, but not seriously.
Assistant District Attorney Kenneth E. Lynch believes the crime was a gang act. He also said the victims were not gang members.
Dokins is being charged as an adult. if convicted on all counts, he faces multiple life sentences. The teen is due in court Friday morning in Compton for arraignment. Prosecutors have asked for his bail to be set at $3 million.
The city it offering a $50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the killer of 1-year-old Angel Cortez.
Angel Cortez was fatally shot while in his father's arms Monday night, near the corner of 105th and Hickory Streets in South Los Angeles. Cortez and his father, Mauro Cortez, who was also hit, were rushed to the hospital, where Angel was pronounced dead after life-saving efforts failed.
Police say a young man on a bike, at the corner of 105th and Hickory Streets, was the shooter. They would not speculate on a motive for the shooting, but the LAPD’s criminal gang homicide division is investigating. So are federal agencies. Police dismissed speculation that someone had targeted the family because of the color shirt one of the baby’s relatives wore. LA City Councilman Joe Buscaino, whose district includes Watts, said the focus should be on finding the boy’s killer.
"We talk about the gang issue," he said. "Let me be clear. Angel Cortez was not a gang member. He was a one-year-old child. He should not be subject to this violent act. And we as a community will not put up with it."