Police say 23-year-old murder suspect Jorge Nolasco targeted his victim specifically when he allegedly stabbed line cook Guillermo Carmona-Perez in an attack that shocked Venice. Other suspects might still be outstanding.
LAPD Lt. John Radtke indicated that detectives believe the crime was personal. "It does appear the suspect went there looking for the victim," he told the Weekly.
Nolasco was arrested Thursday and has been charged with suspicion of murder, the LAPD announced today:
The suspect, an L.A. resident, was being held in lieu of $1 million bail, according to the department. He was arraigned yesterday, police said.
The motive for the attack wasn't entirely clear, Radtke said.
"The investigation is ongoing," he said:
We're looking for more information to try to determine a motive for the stabbing. We are looking at personal angles. We think there is more to the story.
He also said detectives believe that "it is possible there are other suspects involved." However, no others have been named, and no warrants have been issued in the case, he said.
The victim's fiance appeared at a news conference after the murder to ask for help with funds to get his body shipped to family members in Oaxaca, Mexico. The woman bemoaned the loss, saying Carmona-Perez was a breadwinner.
The young man had left work at Mercedes Grille near Venice Pier when he was stabbed near Washington Boulevard and Pacific Avenue about 12:15 a.m. on Nov. 18, police said.
Coroner's investigators said he died from a stab wound to the chest. Witnesses found him on the ground. There were reports that some walked by his body because they believed he was a homeless guy who had simply passed out with beer in his hand or nearby.
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Carmona-Perez might have been en route to a job at the nearby Baja Cantina, although reports that he had stopped by a nearby liquor store for beer could also suggest he was done for the night.
In any case, we spoke to a manager at Mercedes Grille who cried on the phone over the loss. Carmona-Perez left behind a 1-year-old baby, the manager told us.