CARSON — When deputies spotted a family of seven walking along Sepulveda Boulevard at 4:30 a.m. Friday, they suspected something wasn’t right.
After talking with family members, who spoke very little English, deputies learned they were visiting Southern California from Sweden for a family members graduation, but had been left homeless and penniless due to a family emergency, Los Angeles County sheriff’s spokeswoman Nicole Nishida said.
“They had a family emergency where they had to cut their trip short,” Nishida said. But the cost of re-booking an earlier flight used up all of the family’s money, leaving them stranded with no means to obtain food or shelter.
The family was comprised of a mother, father and five daughters, officials added. The children were a 2-year-old girl, two 10-year-old twin girls, a 14-year-old girl and a 17-year-old girl.
“Deputies were able to kind of talk to them with the limited English they do know,” Nishida said. The family was then taken to the sheriff’s Carson Station.
“We actually have a (reserve) sergeant who speaks Swedish who came out,” she added. The sheriff’s department has deputies speaking more than 100 languages.
After learning of their predicament, the deputies decided to circulate an email to try and raise funds to help the family.
They procured donations which were used to provide the family with hotel lodging, food and transportation to Los Angeles International Airport, where they boarded a Sweden-bound airplane Sunday, Nishida said.
PHOTO courtesy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department