A 37-year-old transient was arrested on Sept. 10 and charged with murder for allegedly killing a man the previous evening near Fairfax and Willoughby avenues.
Det. Sean Kinchla, with the Los Angeles Police Department’s West Bureau Homicide Unit, said the murder occurred at approximately 9:30 p.m. on Sept. 9 in the 800 block of North Fairfax Avenue. The suspect, Pablo Arizpe, and the victim were involved in a confrontation. Arizpe allegedly stabbed the victim in the neck with an unknown object and fled.
The victim, who police said was a homeless man in his 40s, sought help from bystanders who called 911. Paramedics arrived and pronounced him dead at the scene.
“The motive is unknown,” Kinchla said. “We don’t know what started it, whether it was some sort of dispute or retaliation for something.”
Officers located the suspect the following day in the same neighborhood. Arizpe was taken into custody and is being held on $2 million bail.
The murder was the second in the same general area in the past two weeks. A 27-year-old man was shot and killed on Aug. 30 near the intersection of Melrose and Sierra Bonita avenues in what police said is likely a gang-related killing. The two homicides were unrelated and the locations were coincidental, Kinchla said.
“[The earlier homicide] is what we would classify as an isolated incident,” Kinchla added. “[The suspect and victim] happened to be in the same area. It’s not part of any type of turf dispute.”
The homicide on Aug. 28 remains unsolved. Witnesses reported seeing the male suspect flee in a dark-colored SUV east in an alley just south of Melrose Avenue. The suspect was described as black, approximately 20 to 25 years old and 5 feet 10 inches to 6 feet tall. He was wearing a dark-colored jacket.
Senior lead officer Inga Wecker, of the LAPD’s Wilshire Division, is assigned to the Melrose Avenue shopping district and surrounding community. She said gangs are not a problem in the area. Officers monitor graffiti, and Wecker said the graffiti commonly seen around Melrose Avenue is associated with taggers, not hardcore gang members known for violence. She said the investigation into the murder on Aug. 28 is ongoing and few details can be released, but she added that the public should not be overly concerned.
“It wasn’t a random act of violence,” Wecker said. “The lead detective doesn’t feel like there is any kind of threat to people in the Melrose area.”
Anyone with information about either homicide is asked to call the LAPD’s West Bureau Homicide Unit at (213)382-9470. During weekends and off-hours, call the LAPD’s hotline at (877)LAPD247.
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