Friday Morning Homicide Leaves Neighbors Shaken

A memorial was set up for Reynaldo Cordova at the corner of 23rd and Harrison streets.

A memorial was set up for Reynaldo Cordova at the corner of 23rd and Harrison streets.

En Español.

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.

A memorial also appeared at 23rd and Alabama streets on Saturday. Photo by Marta Franco.

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.”

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14 Comments

  1. RIP RAY RAY LOVE NEVR STPS

  2. Aaron

    The longer I live here, the more I want cameras every 50 feet.

    That woman who has lived in the Mission for 12 years blew my mind when she said, “we’ve never had any problems at all.” It’s bittersweet to hear about another person’s perceptions shattered by reality. I’d like to hear what she says after be presented with any month’s crime data. A lot of people don’t seem to wake up and notice what’s happening around them until they are a witness or a victim.

    I get more unsolicited communication about Bed Bath and Beyond and Safeway than I do about safety in my own neighborhood. Something is wrong.

    • Laura

      Aaron, I think the person you are talking about only lived in the neighborhood for 6 months. (UGGGGH!!) THAT pissed ME OFF!!
      I’m born and raised in the Mission. FIFTY freaking years LOL. How are you coming to the neighborhood (obviously not doing your research) and say, “Oh! nothing like this has ever happened in this neighborhhod before”. !!! That irritates me. Although, I am irritated with the majority of the people moving to the Mission and having NO RESPECT for the neighborhood they are moving INTO,they claim it as their own without acknowledging they are moving INTO a culture..and a way of life.
      I embrace everyone…it’s not a racial thing as I am white w/ Latino children.

      In my book it’s a RESPECT issue, ignorance.

      I’ve raised 3 children here, and I’m still here.

      • tessa

        Thank you Laura!

      • Aaron

        I respect my neighborhood, but a “culture” of simpleminded gang rivalries and street crime as an after-school activity is not something I will ever respect. Life is too short for such nonsense.

      • dogfella

        It’s not the new comers shooting each other. It’s the new comers making the neighborhood safer. A stagnant neighborhood without change is a dead neighborhood.

    • Laura

      Okay…corner for 6mos, down the street 12 years? HOLY …!!! I don’t know what the heck she has been doing for the past 12 years..wow.
      But Aaron, I dont agree with the violence, and as time goes by, the gang members are younger and younger. Guns are toys to them. Most” of the OGs change, but are forever with love for their barrio as we all are.
      I think poverty plays a part in this because you probably dont see gangs on Rodeo Drive or in the 90210 zip code…

  3. GERARDO SOSA..."G"

    I NEW REYNALDO” RAY RAY” I WAS A ROOMMATE WITH THEM ON FLORIDA ST .HE WAS A GOOD GUY ALWAYS TRYING TO HELP SOMEBODY OUT HE WAS NOT A GANG MEMBER.MAY GODBLESS THERE FAMILY THEY LOST A FEW MEMBERS IN THE PAST FEW YEARS NOW THIS.R.I.P “RAY RAY”.

  4. GERARDO SOSA..."G"

    MY PRAYERS GO OUT TO REYNALDO SR “RAY” MAY GOD BE WITH YOU AND YR FAMILY RAY.

  5. juan carlos

    Aaron if you don’t feel safe, move back to your old neighborhood. You will never understand… it’s been like this for a long time…now you and everyone else comes into our neighborhood and think that everything has to change, so that you guys can feel safe? Not cool!

    • Ben

      So you’re saying it’s cool if people get murdered as long as it keeps the yuppies and hipsters out? Want to volunteer one of your loved ones to die for the cause, or is it only cool if it’s somebody who doesn’t mean anything to you getting murdered?

    • the tc

      @juan carlos. Everything has to change so we ALL feel safe regardless of who/what we are and where we came from. Take your ignorant, racist views and start your own blog.

  6. the real

    THAT KID WAS ON DRUGS AND HAD NO GUIDENCE IN HIS LIFE HIS FAMILY WAS ALLOWING THIS SO IT’S REALLY NOT A SURPRISE GANG VIOLENCE IS ONLY GETTING WORSE…… I’M JUST A NEIGHBOR ON THE SAME BLOCK WERE HE LIVES JUST SAD TO SEE HIS FAMILY ALLOW THIS. I’D HATE TO SAY IT BUT NOTHING IS GONNA CHANGE

  7. antoinette ríos

    Thank You Laura….as sadly most of the people moving into The Mission are not even San Francisco natives. and many are running down our traditions and culture.

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