Tuesday, February 9, 2010
This interesting Los Angeles Times article by Sam Quinones is here. In part:
Real said he fired in the air to scare onlookers as Renteria walked across the park and shot the parolee. (Renteria was charged last summer with Cordova's murder.)
Back on Drew Street minutes later, Real changed his sweat shirt, met his wife and daughter at his stepfather's and went about his Sunday.
That scene, described step by emotionless step, captured the life of opposing impulses of Francisco "Pancho" Real, former leader of the Drew Street clique of the Avenues gang and a member of a notorious crime family.
He ordered up extortions and robberies and taxed drug dealers, but said he didn't use drugs, attended church every Sunday and attempted, as an attorney skeptically put it in cross-examination, to be a "kinder and gentler shot-caller."
In testimony over two weeks in Los Angeles County Superior Court, Real, 28, offered a firsthand account of life in one of Southern California's most notorious Latino gangs. The Avenues gang has roamed Northeast L.A. since the 1950s. Its Drew Street clique, of newer vintage, dates to the 1990s.