University Park Blotter: a tragic week

March 6 - March 12, 2019

NOTE: On March 10, USC student Victor McElhaney was shot during an alleged robbery attempt a few miles off campus in the South Central neighborhood of Los Angeles. Read more about his life here.

  • Read our report on how the LAPD recorded his tragic death.
  • This is how USC’s Department of Public Safety (DPS) recorded his tragic death: Homicide | 4:16 a.m. | Outside USC Area (location unknown). “LAPD officers reported that a student was the victim of a homicide.”


The following is our weekly Crosstown University Park Blotter, a rundown of crimes in one neighborhood. University Park is unique in that there are two law enforcement agencies patrolling the area – the Los Angeles Police Department and DPS.


You can find the last two editions of our blotter here and here. In the style of newspaper police blotters, we’re choosing a selection of incidents, some criminal and some not, reported to both the LAPD and DPS. 



March 6, 2019

From DPS:


Harassment | 2:54 p.m. | Pertusati University Bookstore (840 Childs Way)

“A staff member reported that a student who made a purchase from her at the location subsequently made unwanted contact with her on a social media site.”


From the LAPD:


Theft | 3 p.m. | 700 block of W. 32nd St.

Suspect, who was an Uber or Lyft driver, took victim’s identification or driver’s license and used their vehicle to escape. Victim was a student.


March 7, 2019

From DPS:


Sex offense | 8:56 a.m. | CVS Pharmacy (3335 S. Figueroa St.)

An unidentified student reported that on March 2, 2019, she was sexually battered while walking outside the location.


Possession of a fake ID | 10:25 p.m. | Banditos Tacos & Tequila (900 W. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.)

“Four students were arrested for possession of fake Id’s [sic], cited and released.”


March 8, 2019

From DPS:


Suicide Attempt | 12:34 p.m. | David X. Marks Tower (612 Hellman Way)

“A student was transported to a local hospital for medical treatment after sustaining a self inflicted cut to his wrist.”


Suspicious Circumstances | 4:34 p.m. | Hoffman Hall of Business Administration (7701 Exposition Blvd.)

“A student reported that one of his classmates threatened him after he advised his professor that another classmate was cheating off his exam.”



March 9, 2019

From DPS:


Robbery | 10:29 p.m. | 36th Pl. and Budlong Ave.

“A suspect in a vehicle pulled alongside a juvenile who was walking with her boyfriend near the location and demanded her shoes. Fearing for her safety, the juvenile yelled for help and the suspect drove away.”


From the LAPD:


Burglary | 8 p.m. | 2100 block of Portland St.

Suspect attempted to rob victim’s dwelling and used bodily force on victim. Suspect was arrested. Victim was a 74-year-old white female.


Intimate partner assault | 9 p.m. | 2900 block of S. Figueroa St.

Victim was put into a chokehold by her former or current partner while she was sitting in her vehicle in a parking lot. Suspect was homeless or transient. Victim was a 43-year-old Hispanic female.


March 10, 2019

See above note about the tragic death of USC student Victor McElhaney



March 11, 2019

From DPS:


Assault | 1:09 a.m. | Jack in the Box (2921 S. Figueroa St.)

“A suspect was arrested for assaulting two non-USC males and a non-USC female with a knife and a hammer.”


Sex offense | 4:51 a.m. | 30th St. and Royal St.

“A non-USC female reported that she was sexually battered by a student.”


From the LAPD:


Prowler | 11:56 p.m. | 3000 block of Shrine Pl.

A student reported that the suspect, who was homeless or transient, was found in their residence. The victim was a 22-year-old white male.


Mar. 12, 2019

From DPS:


Suspicious Circumstances | 3:49 p.m. | Engemann Student Health Center (1031 W. 34th St.)

“A counselor at the location reported receiving a disturbing phone call from a former student with a history of mental illness.”


Battery | 9:54 p.m. | Jack in the Box (2921 S. Figueroa St.

“A suspect was arrested for punching an employee at the location after he was refused service.”


How we did it:
We looked at both publicly available LAPD data and the daily log DPS of reports of incidents and crimes in the University Park neighborhood of Los Angeles. For neighborhood boundaries, we rely on the borders defined by the Los Angeles Times. Learn more about our data here.


LAPD data and DPS logs only reflect incidents that are reported to the department, not how many crimes actually occurred. In making our calculations, we rely on the data that the LAPD makes publicly available through the Open Data Portal and the logs DPS makes publicly available on its website. On occasion, LAPD or DPS may update past crime reports with new information, or recategorize past reports. Those revised reports do not always automatically become part of the public database.


Want to know how your neighborhood fares? Or simply just interested in our data? Email us at