Lily Burk's Funeral in Los Angeles, a Calm Before the Storm
For a lot of people, the vibrantly sunny Los Angeles weekend was a time to focus on the life and death of 17-year-old Lily Burk, who was honored at a ceremony at Barnsdall Art Park. It's not often you see 500 people gathered to note the passing of a teenager who has yet to make her mark on the world, but that is the crowd estimate that turned out for the popular teenager.
Even with the somber and appropriate tone of media coverage that came from the event, almost everyone was still raising questions about how her alleged murderer, Charles Samuel, managed to remain free after a life of crime.
The press was excluded from the event, aside from a pool photographer who shared photos of the crowd with other media outlets -- a decision many felt was very appropriate. But now, things are about to change.
If this tragedy follows the trajectory of other murders that have gained national and global prominence, there are bound to be political outcomes from her senseless carjacking, kidnapping and murder.
Already, some analysts and journalists are questioning the city's dedication to embracing the Broken Window Syndrome strategy of crime-fighting as Police Chief Bill Bratton gets ready to bolt and concerns arise about how to maintain momentum. And although the California State Legislature will probably avoid ghoulish and inappropriate comments about Lily Burk as it tussles over its almost permanent budget debacle, the early release of prisoners proposed by some is now in the crosshairs because Charlie Samuel was on parole.
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