Local police received a phone call at 2:02 am on 8-8-97 from a woman who reported that she had heard gun shots and then a car screeching away on her street. Local authorities responded and found a young woman dead of an apparent gun shot wound lying on the sidewalk in front of a gated residence. They secured the scene and notified Homicide.
Homicide investigators arrived at 0304 hours. They confirmed that a gun shot wound was found in the neck just below the left ear. Her purse was found at the scene as well.
The coroner arrived at 0427 hours. Initial findings indicated that the victim was shot at medium range. The body was transported for autopsy at 0545 hours.
Homicide investigators found no evidence of a struggle. It appeared that the young woman had been walking along the sidewalk and had been shot, possibly by someone from a passing car.
The young woman was identified as 18-year-old Esperanza Margolis, known to friends as "Sad Girl" or "Loquita". She had known gang connections but had recently been trying to break these connections, according to family and close friends. This had created enmity between Esperanza and her "crew," and she also still had problems with rival gang members due to her previous affiliation.
Esperanza was last seen at a party at a friend's home. She had quite a bit to drink and her sister took her car keys away to prevent her from driving. Esperanza had a verbal altercation with a member of the gang she recently left, a young man nicknamed "Little Jesus" or "LJ". This man had been her boyfriend off and on for the past four years. Esperanza was angry and decided to walk home, which would have been a three-mile walk. The sidewalk where she was found is approximately halfway between the location of the party and her home.
Later that night, police broke up a party at the residence where Esperanza was last seen. This was before the connection had been made to the party. Rival gang members had crashed the party and the ensuing chaos had resulted in neighbors calling the police.
Police arrived and raided the party at 3:14 am. Members of both the Western Locos (male gang counterpart to the Locas) and a rival gang were arrested for disturbing the peace. During the raid police recovered a Smith & Wesson .44 caliber revolver from a trash can in the residence. This gun was later positively identified as the weapon used in the murder of Esperanza Margolis. No prints were found on the gun, and when its serial number was traced it was found to be a stolen gun.
See much more info at http://www.unlovedcrimes.com/esperanza/victim.htm