Fear in Los Angeles as police question the deaths of two African-American models in Downtown over the span of two days. The families speak of a serial killer on the loose, even if there is no proof yet.
The two cases
On September 10, Nichole ‘Nikki’ Coats’ family discovered her body two days after their text messages went unanswered. ‘Nikki’s death is still declared “suspicious” while she awaits the coroner’s response.
Two days later, in a luxury condominium less than three miles away, Malisa Mooney was also found murdered. Also in this case it was the messages via mobile phone, or rather their absence for an entire week had made the family members suspicious.
“There is a predator in circulation”, raised the alarm ‘Nikki’s’ aunt, May Stevens, who had discovered her body, although so far only Malisa’s death has been ruled a homicide. In ‘Nikki’s last message she said that she was going out on a date.
“I want answers, I want to know why my daughter died. ‘Nikki’ had no enemies,” said her mother, Sharon Coats. The aunt, who discovered the body, said she barely recognized her niece: “She had one leg up in the air as if she was kicking something. That’s not how you go to bed and die. I’m convinced she was killed.” . Malesa, who was 31 years old, was also a model, but she made ends meet as a real estate agent and only a month ago she had moved into the house where she was killed. Alerted by her family, on September 12 the police broke into the Bunker Hill apartment and found her lifeless, it is not clear when.
Los Angeles crime
The deaths of the two young women come on the heels of a Los Angeles City Hall report on the high crime rates faced by black women, even as overall crime statistics in the city are decreasing. Citing police data, the report noted that women of color make up just 4.3 percent of the city’s population but account for 25-33 percent of violence victims: “They are in an exceptionally precarious position as a result of decades of discrimination, racism and sexism”.