Santa Paula woman killed by stray bullet


Norma Elizaldy, 39, was killed at her home near High Street. The victim's twin sister, Irma Ramos, says Elizaldy's 13-year-old son witnessed his mother get shot, collapse and die while doing laundry in her home. Ramos lives next door to her sister and ran to her aid.

"I ran over there and she's on the floor. There was nothing that I could have done, nothing that anybody could've done. They took apart of our life, our family," said Ramos.

Irma Ramos says that her twin sister, Norma Elizaldy, was sitting under her carport having a cigarette when she was hit on the side of her neck.

Police say rival gangs were fighting outside when gunfire suddenly erupted. Witnesses say the shots came from a passing car, apparently aimed at two men who were fighting in front of the house.

A stray bullet went through a window, killing the mother of two. Ramos says her sister was a loving wife and mother to her two sons, ages 13 and 16. She says her sister, who was a respected optometrist in town, often volunteered to read to children at the local library.

No arrests have been made, but police say they have strong leads on suspects. Police Chief Steve McLean has a warning for gangs in his town.

"In the last 8 months, we've arrested numerous gang members. I don't tolerate gang bangers. One gang banger in Santa Paula is one gang banger too many," said McLean.

Anyone with information about this incident was asked to call authorities anonymously at (805) 525-4474.

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