A 25-year-old man has been charged with murdering a young mother who was found shot to death inside a car in San Pedro last month, officials said Tuesday.
Luis Aurelio Morales was allegedly part of a group that 17-year-old Kayla Huerta was with the night she was killed. Morales was upset by something someone said, then opened fire on the teenager and ran away, the Los Angeles Police Department said in a news release.
Both the suspect and victim are from Wilmington, police said.
Heurta's body was found with multiple bullet wounds, including to her head, inside a car that crashed into a cinder block wall outside an apartment building in the 700 block of West Sepulveda Street. The incident occurred before dawn on June 18, a Monday, investigators said.
Detectives previously said they had not determined whether she was shot in the vehicle or brought there.
Huerta leaves behind a 3-year-old daughter, and was still in high school at the time of her death.
Family members were distraught during a vigil held the day the teen was killed near where her body was found. She had been with relatives on Sunday, and they were bewildered as to who would have taken her life.
Investigators have not revealed what evidence pointed to Morales as a suspect.
The 25-year-old was taken into custody on June 28 and was being held at the Men's Central Jail on $3 million bail, inmate records show.
The L.A. County District Attorney's Office charged him with one count of murder on Monday, according to LAPD.
Morales was scheduled to appear in court on July 18.