SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON) — A 16-year-old girl who died on a San Francisco street in a neighborhood known for drug trafficking has been identified.
The girl was identified Tuesday by city officials as Victorria Moran-Hidalgo of Stanislaus County.
She was found dead on Minna Street in the South of Market neighborhood Friday morning, according to police.
Investigators suspect that the girl suffered a fatal drug overdose.
“We must make it easier to get help than it is to get high,” San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin wrote on Twitter.
The San Francisco County Medical Examiner declared the girl’s death “suspicious,” and homicide detectives are leading the investigation.
No arrests have been made.
Moran-Hidalgo was reported missing by a CPS social worker in Stanislaus County in September of 2021. Last month, she was reported missing again after she ran away from a group home, according to the Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Office.
Her mother wrote on Facebook Tuesday, “Tragedy has hit my family. My youngest daughter Victorria has passed away unexpectedly. At this time I have no answers as I am still dealing with investigators and looking for answers myself.”
Moran-Hidalgo’s tragic death set off a debate on San Francisco’s rampant drug problem.
“As a new parent, I can only guess at the pain this death must have created for her family. I am committed to action. We will work together to hold dealers accountable,” Boudin tweeted.
Boudin’s tweet was heavily criticized by Twitter users who accused the district attorney of being too soft on crime.
“DA Boudin – you have made San Francisco the easiest place to get high in the nation,” Twitter user Michelle Tandler wrote.
The San Francisco Police Officer’s Association also criticized Boudin’s record.
“When you give an army of drug dealers same-day release, when you trivialize enforcing laws to hold dealers and gang leaders accountable, and when you make up tales of why we should feel sorry for those pushing drugs, this happens. People die. Kids die. Shame on you,” the SFPOA wrote.
The neighborhood where the girl died, SoMa, had the city’s second-most drug overdose deaths in 2021, second only to the Tenderloin, according to the county medical examiner’s report.
Mayor London Breed declared a State of Emergency for the Tenderloin in December, allowing the city to waive certain laws to address the crisis of people dying of drug overdoses on the streets. Rapidly deteriorating conditions in the Tenderloin were caused by the opioid crisis, according to the mayor’s office.
Some community activists said they witnessed drug dealers shifting away from the Tenderloin and into SoMa in recent weeks.
Kai Sparnas shot a video from his bicycle of the area on the same day that the 16-year-old girl died.
“The open-air drug market on 8th and Market was booming that day,” Sparnas wrote.