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Jensen Gray Killed in Santa Monica Party Stabbing

Updated at the bottom with the victim's ID and evidence he was friends with the suspect. The headline has changed to reflect new info. First posted at 12:24 p.m. Wednesday.

A rare murder in Santa Monica was reported early this morning near the Third Street Promenade, police told the Weekly.

Cops were sent to an apartment at 425 Broadway at 3:25 a.m. based on a 911 call reporting that someone was stabbed, said Santa Monica police Sgt. Richard Lewis.

The victim, a young man, was ...


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... dead at the scene, he said. In fact, the body was still there this afternoon as a crime scene investigation took place and the coroner's office was notified of the death, Lewis told us.

Arriving officers heard a female screaming and found the man, in his mid- to early-20s, dead in the living room of the apartment, he said.

A suspect was there too, and he was arrested, Lewis said: But the man's ID was not available as he has not been formally booked on suspicion of murder.

Others at the scene were detained as witnesses, according to the sergeant.

"It is believed they knew each other," Lewis said of the suspect and victim.

The upscale complex where the crime took place is known as the Archstone Santa Monica Apartments. It stands across the street from celebrity-patronized clothing boutique Fred Segal.

[Update at 12:59 a.m. Thursday]:

Late on Wednesday cops ID'd the suspect as 26-year-old Ryan Taylor Bright of Santa Monica. A Santa Monica police statement says he was booked on suspicion of murder and was being held in lieu of $1 million bail.

The Santa Monica Daily Press reports that a party at the apartment preceded the attack.

Lewis told the paper that people at the residence Tuesday night/Wednesday morning seemed to know each other but that, for some reason, things turned "violent."

The victim was a 27-year-old Laguna Beach man who had yet to be identified, according to the Daily Press.

The paper said the case comprises the only murder in the city this year.

Investigators want any witnesses to call police at 310-458-8495.

[Update at 11:50 p.m.]: The L.A. County coroner's office told the Weekly the victim is 27-year-old Jensen Gray of Laguna Beach. An autopsy was scheduled for tomorrow morning. Here's a Facebook profile photo we found of a Jensen Gray from "South Laguna." The page says he attended Laguna Beach High School.

[Added at 12:20 p.m.]: Jensen and suspect Bright are friends on Facebook. Bright's page says he also attended Laguna Beach High School.

[@dennisjromero / djromero@laweekly.com / @LAWeeklyNews]


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