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Emotional scenes at funeral for teenager killed by Los Angeles police

There were emotional scenes on Monday at the funeral of a 14-year-old girl who was shot dead two days before Christmas by a Los Angeles police officer while shopping with her mother.

Valentina Orellana-Peralta was killed on December 23 when the police officer opened fire on a suspect in a clothing store. She was caught in the line of fire while hiding inside a dressing room.

Valentina's mother Soledad Peralta and her father were joined by civil rights activist Reverend Al Sharpton at the funeral in Gardena, near Los Angeles. 

Sharpton called said the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) should be held accountable for the killing. 

"We keep seeing LAPD get it wrong. And here we are again, how long will it take for you to get it right?" said Sharpton. 

"The question is if two days before Christmas, would you have gone into a shopping center in Bel Air or Beverly Hills and started shooting like that and not consider whether high-end shoppers might be hurt? The fact that the value of a life was not considered is disturbing," he added. 

Valentina was born and raised in Santiago, Chile, and came to the United States six months ago with her mother to visit an older sister, the Los Angeles Times reported.

LAPD officers dispatched to the store were responding to several radio calls of an assault and possible shooting in progress, police said.

The officer who fired the shots has been placed on administrative while an investigation is under way, an LAPD spokesman said. No firearm was recovered from the suspect, police said.

(Source: Reuters) 

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