18-Year-Old Found Dead in Street Near UCLA Medical Center

An 18-year-old man was found dead in the street near the UCLA Medical Center in Santa Monica early Sunday.

The body was found at about 5 a.m. in the 1300 block of 16th Street, about a block from UCLA Medical Center-Santa Monica. The deceased individual suffered a head injury, according to police.

Earlier Sunday, police received a call about a possible shooting in the 2100 block of Pico Boulevard, less than one mile from where the deceased man was found. Authorities found bullet casings scattered around a parked car.

It was not immediately clear whether the two cases are connected, police said.

Family identified the victim as 18-year-old Juan Castillo. He had just graduated from Santa Monica high school last year, his father Jorge Castillo told NBC4.

Castillo played football when he was in high school and was offered a football scholarship, but he had one goal.

"His dream was going to the Marines," his father said.

Castillo's family says he was at the wrong place at the wrong time.

"I'm just angry inside. What he did to my son, he didn't deserve to die that way," Jorge Castillo said.

Castillo's father said his son was on his way home from a party when the shooting happened. He didn't have a car so he must have gotten a ride home, his father added.

"I just want justice to be served," his father added.

Juan's childhood friend Nick Gomez is encouraging witnesses to talk to police to help find who ended Juan's life. 

Police asked anyone with information to call 310-458-8491.

If you would like to donate to a GoFundMe account set up to help the Castillo family, you may do so here. Note that GoFundMe deducts 7.9 percent of all funds raised in the form of platform and payment processing charges.

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