Christmas Eve vigil held for slain South L.A. father

A vigil took place on Christmas Eve at the site in South Los Angeles where a 35-year-old man was stabbed to death in an attack that has left police searching for the killer and a motive.

William Jennings died about 10:30 p.m. Friday after a confrontation in the 3300 block of West Jefferson Boulevard in the Jefferson Park neighborhood.

He and his wife had just walked home from a Christmas party, according to relatives, when he went to the corner store. During that quick trip, he was approached by another man who pulled out a knife and stabbed Jennings after a brief dispute, according to police. Los Angeles Fire Department paramedics pronounced Jennings dead at the scene.

On Monday, his family reacted to surveillance video of the stabbing that was released by police.

“Oh my God, you didn’t have to kill him,” wife Tamysha Jennings said, watching the footage.

“Are you serious that you really took somebody’s life over, to me, nothing?” Jennings added. “You changed the world when you took him.”

Detectives said they hoped the release of the surveillance video — which shows the confrontation, as well as the killer in profile, looking back, as he flees the scene — would help lead to an arrest.

Cars can be seen driving by in the video, and authorities hope some of those motorists will have information about the crime, Los Angeles Police Department Detective Matt Courtney said. Police believe the killer stays in or frequents the Jefferson Park area, he said.

No weapon has been found.

On Tuesday night, Jennings’ 11-year-old daughter Armani sobbed as she spoke about her father during the vigil.

“My dad, he didn’t deserve to go like this,” she said. “I didn’t want him to leave me like this. I’m too young to be in this world by myself.”

KTLA’s Melissa Pamer wrote and Kacey Montoya contributed to this story.


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