Google Maps Working To Remove Image Of Slain 14-Year-Old Kevin Barrera

| by Sarah Fruchtnicht

Officials at Google Maps said Monday they are working diligently to remove the image of a slain California teen who was shot to death in 2009.

Kevin Barrera, 14, was shot and killed near a railroad track in Richmond, Calif., on Aug. 15, 2009. His killer has not been found.

Barrera’s father, Jose Berrara, learned last week that an image of his son’s body can be seen on Google Maps’ satellite view of roughly the same address where he died.

“When I see this image, that’s still like that happened yesterday,” Jose Barrera told KTVU-TV. “And that brings me back to a lot of memories.”

He said he would make a formal complaint against Google and lobby California lawmakers, if that’s what it took to have the picture removed.

“What’s the point to show those pictures to the people, you know — pictures of my dead son?” he said. “This is really painful to the whole family.”

Google Maps receives many requests to remove content that people find offensive, and they usually decline these requests, CNN reported.

Google Maps vice president Brian McClendon told KTVU in an emailed statement that the company is working hard to replace the controversial image and hopes to have it done within eight days.

“Our hearts go out to the family of this young boy,” the statement said. “Since the media first contacted us about the image, we’ve been looking at different technical solutions. Google has never accelerated the replacement of updated satellite imagery from our maps before, but given the circumstances we wanted to make an exception in this case.”

McClendon said the Barrera family was contacted to let them know they are working to taking the photograph down.

Sources: CNN, KTVU-TV