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Patients at Palomar Hospital were stunned on January 7 at 1:00 a.m.: a dark-haired girl about 16 years old — pale and on the verge of collapse — staggered into the emergency room with a large gash on her neck. Two young men assisted in getting her into a backroom and then fled the building.

According to one of the men, the victim had been stabbed during an argument. A trauma team was called, and two security guards staked out the waiting room. Police officers talked to three girls who said they witnessed the stabbing. Bereaved parents of the victim clung to each other as they waited for news.

A source at the hospital reported that the victim’s jugular vein had been severed and that the girl was admitted. The source also confirmed that the victim was a documented gang member.

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