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Residents awaken to news of murder on cul-de-sac near Arcadia

December 13, 2011 |  1:10 pm

Kristi Court Arcadia homicide 012
A slow procession of passers-by crept through a tiny cul-de-sac Tuesday near Arcadia where a father of three was murdered by a gunman demanding money.

No one on little Kristi Court was used to this.

“One time a kid stole a bike from my garage, but that was 20 years ago,” said James Quan, owner of a pizza store, standing across the street.

The gunman, homicide detectives say, lay in wait Monday night at 11021 Kristi Court, a beige, stucco, two-story house with a couple of small palm trees in front. 

When the father, his wife and three children returned home, the gunman confronted them. The father handed over the family's rent money. But the gunman demanded more. He took the family inside and forced the wife and children, ages 3, 5 and 6, into a bedroom.

Next the wife and children heard several gunshots and ran out to see the father lying, fatally wounded, on the ground, dying, sheriff's detectives said. The intruder had fled.

The gunman has not been caught, and a complete description of him was not released.

Kristi Court was shut down as detectives and forensic technicians worked through the night.

On Tuesday, Quan remembered how his kids rode their tricycles in the street when they first moved there in 1990. Later, he put up a basketball hoop in the street, as did another neighbor.

The street, home to 10 houses, each with three-car garages, five bedrooms and high ceilings, was built in 1989.

No one seemed to know much about the family that moved into 11021 Kristi Court two years ago. The family tended to enter the house from within after closing the garage door. 

Quan said he hardly saw the father and did not even know there were three children until Monday night, when he arrived home and found he could not get onto his street.

At about 10:40 a.m. Tuesday, a truck of workers from a Monrovia-based company, Emergency Response, arrived with towels and cleanser. The company does "crime scene cleaning," said its owner, Ben Mihm, a former Glendale policeman. Mihm said it was the first time his company had cleaned a house on tiny Kristi Court.


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-- Sam Quinones


Photo: A cleaning worker arrives at the home on Kristi Court. Credit: Sam Quinones / Los Angeles Times.