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16-year-old wanted in two Arizona deaths is arrested on skid row

January 19, 2012 | 12:38 pm

Los Angeles police arrested a 16-year-old boy Thursday morning on skid row after officers recognized him as a suspect wanted in the killing of a man and woman at an Arizona medical marijuana shop.

The boy was pictured on a flier distributed by law enforcement, saying he was wanted for the Jan. 17 killings in Peoria, Ariz., where a man and woman were killed and another man shot.

The boy, who was not identified by authorities because he is a juvenile, then stole the dead man’s car and abandoned it in Phoenix, police say, adding that they believe he took a Greyhound bus to Los Angeles.

One LAPD officer recognized the face and description of the teen from the flier. He remembered seeing the youth sleeping near Wilson and 7th streets Wednesday morning. The officer and his partner left their briefing Thursday and went directly to the location.

“When the officers returned to the last place they had seen the kid, there he was, sleeping,” said Lt. Paul Vernon. “They detained him at gunpoint, but he put up no resistance.”

The officers found a semi-automatic handgun in a bag of belongings. 

“This was police work at its best and most efficient this morning,” Vernon said. “We received the [flier] last night and put the information out to all the officers, including the shift that came in this morning.” 

Detectives from Arizona were still working on obtaining an arrest warrant for the youth, and two Peoria detectives were driving to Los Angeles.

In the meantime, LAPD detectives plan to book the minor for gun possession. He will be taken to Eastlake Juvenile Hall and eventually extradited to Arizona. 


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-- Richard Winton