Victim’s wife: ‘I already forgave the murderers, but I want justice’

Mónica Pérez lights a candle in honor of her husband.  (Jorge Macías)

Mónica Pérez lights a candle in honor of her husband. (Jorge Macías)

Photo: Jorge Macías / Impremedia

Almost two weeks after the beating that a group of people gave her husband, outside a bar in Hawthorne, Mónica Pérez continues to demand justice for the death of her husband Melguín, while, through tears, she assures that she has already forgiven the murderers.

“I have already forgiven them, but I demand justice,” said the grieving widow and mother of four children, ages six to 14. “It is not fair what they did; my children were left without their father… ”.

On October 9, former security guard Melguín López Santos, 40, was about to run over several men with his truck on the sidewalk in front of the Rock It Sports Lounge & Grill bar, in the city of Hawthorne.

Apparently, Melguín had had an altercation with a person at the premises previously. He was kicked out of the place and returned at 2:10 am in his truck, which climbed up the sidewalk and ended up colliding with a tree; he lost control and seconds later crashed into the wall of a store.

Melguín López Santos was already struggling to stop drinking. (Courtesy)

On a video Published on the internet, it is observed that, when Melguín tries to drive in reverse, someone opens the door, takes him out of the vehicle and brutally hits him. Police are looking for four suspects.

Hawthorne police officers saw the driver lying on the ground, sustaining what appeared to be blunt force trauma. Melguín López Santos was pronounced dead at the scene, reported the sheriff’s agent, Grace Medrano. So far, no one has been arrested.

“I ask, why did some men take him out of the bar and not the security people?” Asked Mónica Pérez. “What happened was not an accident; it was a murder… many people saw what happened and here someone is being covered up ”.

Josefina Pérez, Mónica’s aunt, described Melguín López Santos as “a man of the home, who drank his beers from time to time and was struggling to get away from drinking.”

Brandn López accompanies his mother in a protest where the family asked for justice for his father. (Jorge Macías)

“I told Monica to forgive the murderers from my heart so that she may be at peace with God,” said the woman.

Monica Pérez, her family and community activists publicly asked the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors to file a motion to offer a reward and capture those responsible for Melguín’s death.

“This was a lynching and that is crazy,” Najee Ali, an activist from Los Angeles, told La Opinion. “A lynching is no different when the culprits are the Hispanics themselves; we are all people and we have to live as people not as barbarians ”.

Ali added that “simply”, Melguin’s attackers must have waited for the police to arrive.

“But what they did was commit a summary street justice trial and I think we can’t have a civilization with this kind of mentality,” he said.

During a recent demonstration in front of the Rock It Sports Lounge & Grill bar, a son of the victim – now an orphan – joined the demand for justice for his father and lit a candle in his memory, on a makeshift altar.

It was Brandon López, 14, Melguín’s eldest son.

“My father once told me that when he was no longer here, that I had to be the head of the house,” the young man told La Opinion.

Now that his life has radically changed, Brandon knows he will have to fight hard for his mother and sisters Stephanie, Abigail and Karina.

“My dad bought me my shoes and my clothes; he was a good father… he was a good person… he was my best friend, and now I have to take his place ”.

To help the family

The family has opened a GoFundMe account to bury her husband. If you like to help the family, visit Gofundme.com and write Please Help Monica Perez And Heer 4 Children


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