Issue:  Vol. 48 / No. 8 / 22 February 2018

Sister of SF youth commissioner killed in apparent domestic violence incident

by Sari Staver

Susana Robles Desgarennes, the younger sister of LGBT activist and San Francisco Youth Commissioner Paola Desgarennes, was shot and killed September 30.

(Susana Robles Desgarennes. Photo: Courtesy Paola Desgarennes)

(Susana Robles Desgarennes. Photo: Courtesy Paola Desgarennes)

Police responding to a call from neighbors found Ms. Desgarennes, 20, dead in a car on Rayburn Street, near the Liberty Steps in Dolores Heights. Police sources said that they believe the incident was a murder-suicide. The man who is believed to have killed her was also found dead in the car and a gun was recovered, the sources said.

The apparent shooter was identified as Angel Raygoza, 24, of San Francisco.

Paola Desgarennes, 26 and a Castro resident, told the Bay Area Reporter in an email that her sister was born in Manzanillo, Colima, Mexico, and was “a mother, entrepreneur, student, and activist” who recently founded a cosmetics company to provide jobs for single mothers.

Ms. Desgarennes had “big dreams that were shut down the day she was tragically killed due to domestic violence,” her sister said.

Plans are underway to establish an organization in honor of Ms. Desgarennes to raise awareness of domestic violence and housing issues in San Francisco, her sister said, adding that many domestic violence crimes could be prevented “if the city would have more resources for families and housing for women who want to leave” abusive situations but cannot because of the high cost of living in San Francisco.

Ms. Desgarennes was an artist and dancer at Loco Bloco, a youth and family organization focused on the development of children and youth through exploration of the arts and she danced for several years at the organization’s carnival, her sister said.

In addition to her sister, Ms. Desgarennes is survived by her 4-year-old daughter, Angel; a brother, Jose; and her mother, Laura.

A Gofundme campaign has been established to help defray educational expenses for Ms. Desgarennes’ daughter. The campaign, which hopes to raise $25,000, was established by Sisters Rising at the Young Women’s Freedom Center, where Ms. Desgarennes had volunteered.

For more information or to donate, visit

— Cynthia Laird, October 3, 2017 @ 11:56 am PST
Filed under: Uncategorized

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