Vanessa Marquez death: Friends call for justice in shooting of actress by South Pasadena police

Friends, family, and former cast members came out in support of justice for actress Vanessa Marquez who was shot and killed by South Pasadena police two years ago.
SOUTH PASADENA, Calif. (KABC) -- Friends, family, and former fellow cast members came out in support of justice for actress Vanessa Marquez, who was shot and killed by South Pasadena police two years ago.

The family has filed a wrongful death lawsuit amid renewed calls for justice in the officer-involved-shooting.

The actress, who is best known for roles on TV's "ER" and the film "Stand and Deliver," was shot in 2018 by police during a welfare check at her home.

"She lived alone. She was 85 pounds. And she was shot in the back. So until this is taken care of, until we address these situations no one is going to trust the police you guys," said actor and friend Will Gotay.

Police originally responded to Marquez's home because her landlord was concerned for her well-being. Officers told Marquez they were going to take her to a local hospital to be evaluated. They claim that's when she picked up a gun; officers then opened fire. It later turned out the gun Marquez had was a replica.

"Every time we call for mental health or assistance black and brown bodies end up dying and make no mistake these are tragically intertwining," said actor Richard Montoya, a member of the performance troupe "Culture Clash."

Protestors who are demanding police reform in South Pasadena say Marquez is another casualty that could've been avoided.

"We are here today in solidarity. We've been here for about 25 days straight, from 12 to 6:30 every day to protest change in South Pasadena,' said London Lang, a member of South Pasadena Youth for Police Reform.
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