One neighbor was asleep in her home when she heard five gunshots just outside her bedroom window. She hit the floor and hid as she heard someone yell, “Let’s get the … out of here.” Then there was silence.
That early-morning shooting on Friday at 23rd and Harrison streets left 26-year-old Reynaldo Cordova dead, and has put many nearby residents on edge.
A day after the woman heard the shots and spoke to police, she was still shocked that a shooting could occur in her neighborhood.
“We never had anything like this before,” she said. She has lived on this corner for only six months, but lived a few streets down for 12 years. “We’ve never had any problems at all. It’s very surprising.”
Police are still searching for the shooter, believed to be a teenager between 16 and 18 years old, who fled in a green Subaru down Harrison Street. Cordova lived nearby on Florida Street, several witnesses told Mission Loc@l.
While some neighbors expressed shock following the homicide, others said this type of violence is normal for the neighborhood.
Standing outside her house on 23rd Street with members of her family, one woman said that the neighborhood is “never safe.” Though she was not surprised by the violence, she still expressed worry.
Pointing to a house just a few doors down, she said her mother heard the shots from her bedroom on 23rd Street. The mother was too scared to go back to sleep for the rest of the night, and called her daughter early in the morning.
“She called me about 5:30 a.m. because she’s supposed to leave for work around 5 a.m., and she was afraid to go out,” she said. “She doesn’t feel safe and she told me to be careful.”
However, the woman said her family doesn’t expect much to change. In 2006, her 15-year-old cousin was murdered at 24th and Harrison streets. Earlier this year, her son was robbed. And another family member said he saw a shooting occur right outside his window a few years back.
“I want to do a protest to have more police around,” the woman said. “The police are never here.”
But an older resident pushing a shopping cart down the street on her way home said there is little else police can do.
“They can’t position themselves on every corner,” she said.
For her, it’s about taking precautions to avoid being in dangerous situations.
“This isn’t an area where, at my age, I’d ever feel comfortable walking around at 1 or 2 a.m.,” she said. “I’m not going to expose myself in that way.”
The shooting left many residents concerned about their families. After the homicide, the neighbor who heard the gunshots below her bedroom window said she would think twice before allowing her 15-year-old son to sign up for a basketball team.
“It would require him to take a bus home after practice — it makes me think a lot more about that,” she said. “It pisses me off. To have to be worried about that is upsetting. They should be allowed to do normal things.”
One young adult resident who lives near 23rd and Harrison said he was “numb” to the violence in the area, which, he added, “happens all the time.” Still, he worries about his mother, who works a graveyard shift and has to walk home each night.
Neighborhood resident Mary Robinson, who has custody over her four grandchildren, tells them to be careful but worries that they won’t always listen.
“While they’re being sneaky, they might get shot,” Robinson said. “It makes me want to move, but where do you go? Every neighborhood has violence.”
Standing in front of a memorial in honor of Cordova at the corner of 23rd and Harrison, neighbor Serafin Saavedra was reminded of the consequences of such violence.
“It saddens me that you could hear that your kid was shot,” Saavedra said. “That they are dead before you.”