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/ DEVELOPMENTS IN LOS ANGELES COUNTY

Man Gets 24 Years for Shooting 9-Year-Old

May 13, 1999

LOS ANGELES — A Highland Park man was sentenced Wednesday to 24 1/2 years in state prison for shooting and critically wounding a 9-year-old girl.

Juan Carlos Granados, 20, sat silently as Superior Court Judge Cesar Sarmiento imposed the maximum sentence. Sarmiento also ordered Granados, a reputed gang member, to pay $5,000 in restitution.

The girl spent about an hour on the witness stand during the trial, but the child's family refused to attend Granados' sentencing because they feared gang retaliation, said Deputy Dist. Atty. Tomas O'Brien.

On April 1, 1998, Granados and another gunman fired 19 rounds at two gang rivals whose car had broken down in the 5200 block of Baltimore Street, O'Brien said. The girl was buying a cob of corn from a street vendor when the shots began.

She hurried back to her home carrying her 6-month-old cousin, but a bullet struck her in the abdomen as she was closing the front door, O'Brien said. She was hospitalized and lost her spleen, a kidney and part of her pancreas.

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