Murder in Westwood

It was a setup for mayhem; a teen party in Los Angeles, no parents, 100 privileged adolescents, plenty of beer, raging hormones, and a single blade. By midnight, one girl was dead, another would die, and a stunned community of parents and educators was left asking: who’s to blame?


    The cell phones, like tom toms, carried the word from kid to kid across West Los Angeles on a Saturday night, November 17, 2001. Girls in low-rise jeans that showed their midriffs and guys wearing sagging shorts and rhinestone studs started aiming like heat-seeking missiles for a house on Thayer Avenue in the shadow of UCLA.

    "Whose house is it? Whose party?"

    "Who cares?" said Tim Livingston, as he got off a bus with five other guys and a girl, Deanna Maran. All were fifteen years old, top students and athletes from Santa Monica High School. One punched the address of the house into his cell phone and Map Quest spit out directions how to get there.

    By ten p.m., more than a hundred kids from some of the best schools in the city were swarming about the yard, drinking beer and alcoholic lemonade. Deanna, who owned the exotic dark skin and long black hair of her Filipino mother and the tall build of her Czech father, argued with another 15-year-old, Sabr...

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