An intense outbreak of gang violence has residents of two Southside neighborhoods flashing back to the dreaded 1980s after a swarm of shootings between the Hoover Street Criminals and the Main Street Crips left one dead and at least two people wounded.
"It's getting like the '80s again," said a man Friday afternoon as he walked past a "Murder Memorial" set up at 97th and Main streets. "The bad old days are coming back. It had slowed up, but now the kids born in those crazy years are starting to act like their parents."
Thursday morning, 28-year-old Douglas Wooley was shot and killed at that corner shortly after 10 a.m. as he was walking. Police and local residents say Wooley was not a member of the Main Street Crips, long a force in this neighborhood, but that members of his family are. "He never bothered anyone," was the most common comment about Wooley.
Sandwiching his death were two shootings on Hoover Street that left two males wounded, one critically. Four men along Hoover Street near 83rd echoed the concerned man on Main Street, dreading a return to the violent days of the 80s and 90s. "It's getting really hot again," one said.
Thursday and Friday the LAPD was out in force and vowed an increased presence in the area for as long as it takes to quell the violence. "Unlike the projects, the two areas are very large, but we are in suppression mode," said Capt. Phil Tingirides, commander of the Southeast Division who is helping coordinate the efforts with 77th Street Division and Criminal Gang Homicide Division. "We have a high visibility. and the detectives are working the cases hard. Plus, we're working closely with [gang] interventionists."
(Warning :The following story comes from a man who was legally drunk and freely admitted it. ).
Hours before Douglas Wooley was killed, he called 911 out of concern for a drunk neighbor who was intoxicated to the point where he collapsed "I got drunk, a little too drunk, and people were concerned, but I guess he was the only one concerned enough to call the paramedics," said a man who goes by La Vigga, a 60-year-old local aritst. "They came and left. But, when I really woke up from my drunken stupor, he was dead."