Youth Held in Killing of Woman During Burglary

A 17-year-old youth was arrested Monday in the slaying of a young mother shot to death during a struggle with two burglars who ransacked her Westlake apartment, police said.

The youth, who was not identified because of his age, was arrested after the victim's companion received an anonymous telephone call Sunday telling him where the suspect could be found, Detective Andy Cicoria said.

Vilma Hernandez, 27, was shot and killed Thursday afternoon in her apartment in the 1100 block of Magnolia Avenue. Hernandez and her companion had come home about 4 p.m. Thursday to find their 59-year-old baby-sitter tied up and two men, armed with a knife and a gun, ransacking their apartment. One of the suspects forced Hernandez's companion into a back room while the woman struggled with the other.

After subduing the companion, the 17-year-old came upstairs and allegedly shot Hernandez in the head, Cicoria said.

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