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Many L.A. Homeless Seek Affluent Areas

Clarence Smith, 65, has slept in a park in Beverly Hills and store doorways for the past five years. "It's not too bad. People bring me food," he says. "I saw Marlon Brando drive by one time. You know, the Godfather?"
Mandalit del Barco, NPR
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Clarence Smith, 65, has slept in a park in Beverly Hills and store doorways for the past five years. "It's not too bad. People bring me food," he says. "I saw Marlon Brando drive by one time. You know, the Godfather?"

Los Angeles County may be the homeless capital of America. Now, a new study shows that thousands of homeless people are avoiding crime-plagued areas like L.A.'s skid row and seeking better, safer lives in affluent neighborhoods away from the city.

Mandalit del Barco profiles some of the homeless people who live in the shadow of Southern California's most affluent areas.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Mandalit del Barco
As an arts correspondent based at NPR West, Mandalit del Barco reports and produces stories about film, television, music, visual arts, dance and other topics. Over the years, she has also covered everything from street gangs to Hollywood, police and prisons, marijuana, immigration, race relations, natural disasters, Latino arts and urban street culture (including hip hop dance, music, and art). Every year, she covers the Oscars and the Grammy awards for NPR, as well as the Sundance Film Festival and other events. Her news reports, feature stories and photos, filed from Los Angeles and abroad, can be heard on All Things Considered, Morning Edition, Weekend Edition, Alt.latino, and npr.org.