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Posted: November 18, 2013

Google says its working to remove image of slain teen

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By Alex Savidge

KTVU-TV - Bay Area

RICHMOND, Calif. —

Officials from Google Maps announced Monday that the organization was working to remove an image showing the body of a Richmond teenager after he was shot and killed back in 2009. (Google Maps image)

The offending image shows police officers standing near 14-year-old Kevin Barrera, who was found, shot to death, along some railroad tracks.

The victim's father Jose Barrera said he learned about the disturbing image last week, and since then he was asking Google to pull it off out of respect for his son. 

“When I see this image, that's still like that happened yesterday,” said Barrera. “And that brings me back to a lot of memories.”

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In an email sent to KTVU Monday, Brian McClendon, the vice president of Google Maps, said the company was making an exception and accelerating the replacement of the controversial satellite image.

“Our hearts go out to the family of this young boy. Since the media first contacted us about the image, we’ve been looking at different technical solutions,” said the statement from McClendon. “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 that his company believes that they can replace the image within eight days.

He also said that his company has spoken to the family to let them know that it was working to take down the picture.

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