Maria had nothing of her own besides socks and a blouse, potentially giving a pimp an opening to woo her with niceties. So Quintero pawed through V-necks, corduroys and bags of underwear at an on-site donation center. She packed a bag: hair spray, razors, lavender shampoo-conditioner, “Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul,” and a flowered journal because Maria liked to write poems. Quintero tried to shake off her misgivings: With a bag of stuff, was it easier for Maria to run? A week later, in Voy’s courtroom, the judge was grim. The night after Maria’s hearing, she ran off. Quintero never found out if she took the bag.
(Photo Credit: Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)