Update: Two Arrested in Killing of Venice Youth Pastor

Police say two men have been arrested in connection with the shooting death of 23-year-old Oscar Duncan.

Two men have been arrested in connection with the killing of Oscar Duncan, a 23-year-old Venice resident who was a youth pastor and former "Youth of the Year," police said Monday.

The Los Angeles Police Department identified the suspects Monday afternoon as Kevin Dwayne Green, 28, and Hopeton Bereford Parsley, 22.

Parsley was arrested Saturday afternoon by homicide detectives with the LAPD's West Bureau and booked at 9:44 p.m. with bail set at $1 million, according to information from the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department's online inmate information data. Green was arrested Friday at 7:55 p.m. by officers with the LAPD's robbery-homicide division and booked at 2:34 a.m. into the Pacific Division jail. Green's bail was set at $1 million and he also had a no-bail parole hold, according to the sheriff's inmate information site.

Parsley was arrested in January in Culver City and sentenced later that month to 270 days in custody, but was released April 21, according to the sheriff's data. He was arrested by Culver City Police Department officers on a domestic violence charge and prosecutors filed charges of domestic violence causing injury, assault with a deadly weapon to produce great bodily injury and making criminal threats, said Lt. Ron Iizuka of the Culver City Police Department.

Duncan was shot and killed June 4 about 10:30 p.m. in the 600 block of Santa Clara Avenue after exchanging words with several men in a white car, police said. A gunman shot one round that struck Duncan in the head and he collapsed on the street and was later pronounced dead at a nearby hospital.

Duncan, a 2006 graduate of Venice High School, was named the 2006 "Youth of the Year" by the Boys & Girls Club of Venice. He later worked for the club as a mentor who helped steer youths away from gangs and as an instructor in the club's audio engineering program.

Duncan also was a youth pastor at Greater Zion Family Church in Compton and oversaw 1,500 youths. Duncan was a captain of the Venice High School football team, homecoming king and known for his singing and dancing talents.

A $50,000 reward was announced last week to help detectives solve the case.

Police were planning on presenting the case Tuesday to the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office for the filing of charges, said Officer Norma Eisenman, a police spokeswoman.

Venice has spoken June 13, 2012 at 03:20 PM
It is a real tragedy that the gang members took the life of the wrong guy. Hopefully justice will be served. I for one would like to see the death pentality reinstated on this one.
Another WorldView June 13, 2012 at 03:43 PM
Let's not rush to judgement here - we still don't KNOW who killed the young man, just who the cops say did it. popos b lyin seems to think that they just grabbed the wrong folks - perhaps they simply 'fit the description' and were easy targets to pin the murder upon. And California does have a death penalty. The question is whether the method is legal and lawful, and whether it's Constitutional as applied.
darnell July 13, 2012 at 06:26 PM
they are from WLA and its tha right guys
Another WorldView July 13, 2012 at 08:32 PM
While I'm in total agreement on the cowardice you cite here SOV - let's remember that we're talking about stigmatized youth-of-color here. Randy Holland has done some great documentaries on the history of "street-gangs" here in LA. They started with groups like "the Slausons" - who organized to combat the threat posed to them and their neighborhoods, by groups like the "spook-hunters" - white kids. Back then the worst thing you might see was a switchblade or the occasional zip-gun - but mostly it was just fists. In "The Fire This Time" - (I hope I got the title rigth there) he shows how both the Crips and Bloods came out of the ashes of the MURDERED Black Panthers - targeted by the LAPD and FBI as part of COINTELPRO (and the CIA's MH-CHAOS is a parallel project here, too). He also shows how the culture of killing may have been fostered by the LAPD and other shadowy forces. And we can't forget the CIA's involvement in the Crack epidemic in the 80's - as the late Gary Webb showed, in his groundbreaking Sacramento Bee articles. Violence begets violence - we need to break the cycle. I recall hearing the story (at a GRVNC meeting) of how one woman in the community (with no outside support or guidance) had been working to help form truces between the various gang-cliques in Venice. For her troubles, she was allegedly marked as a "snitch" by the police (falsely).
Spirit Of Venice July 13, 2012 at 10:48 PM
WV- answering here because our recent exchange was removed...most likely because my post was inappropriate to this conversation thread...which on reflection I must agree that it was...anyway, thanks for the history of gang / police problems in the city...clearly this is a complex issue and my approach was overly-simplistic...


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