Police were on high alert Thursday after the bodies of two young women were found in a popular Los Angeles park with sweeping views of the city.
The Los Angeles Police Department has added officers on foot inside Ernest E. Debs Regional Park and in patrol cars in the area following the discovery of the bodies Wednesday afternoon, said Capt. Patricia Sandoval of the department's Hollenbeck's station.
"We're on high alert. We're worried," Sandoval said Thursday. "It's very alarming, especially for anybody that's a runner, a hiker or a walker who uses that park regularly and thinks, `Am I in harm's way now?' "
A woman walking her dog in the park found the bodies after the pet walked deeper inside and wouldn't come out. When the woman went to investigate, she spotted the lifeless women, Sandoval said.
The Los Angeles County coroner's office identified one woman on Thursday as 19-year-old Gabriela Calzada. There was no information about where she lived.
The women were fully clothed, showed no signs of being sexually assaulted, and could have been in the park for days or weeks, Sandoval said.
Police declined to discuss how the women were killed, citing the integrity of the investigation. But Sandoval said investigators haven't ruled anything out.
"Everything is so early, and there's so much to do on this case," she said. "We don't have much yet."
Police haven't received any recent complaints of anything unusual in the park, Sandoval said.
Last year, police asked for the public's help to identify a man in connection with attacks on three women at the park in a six-month period. One of the women reported being groped as she walked alone, another reported that a man exposed himself, while a third said a man armed with a knife punched her and stood over her for several seconds before fleeing.
Residents in the area expressed deep concern over this week's discovery.
Rosalia Lopez, who said she visits the park nearly every day, told The Los Angeles Times that she and other women in the area have discussed how unsafe they feel now.
"It takes away the tranquility of the place," she said. "You have to be more alert now."