Last month, a 74-year-old man became the seventh homicide victim this year in the city of Santa Clarita, Ca., and its unincorporated neighborhoods, an area that the Los Angeles Times says is consistently rated one of the safest in the nation and is known for attracting families looking for good schools for their children. In previous years, the area usually saw two homicides at most. In 2011, there were six.
The majority of the killings this year have involved romantic disputes or ones involving family members. The 74-year-old’s son has been charged with murder. “This is such an anomaly for Santa Clarita,” said Gail Morgan, the city’s spokeswoman. “I have worked for the city for 25 years, and I have never seen anything like this.” An infant and a newlywed are among the dead so far this year. The department is looking to partner more with the Domestic Violence Center of Santa Clarita Valley.