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'Most Wanted' Suspected Killer Caught After 3 Years : Crime: Man is arrested in Los Angeles in the execution-style slayings of four people, including a 2-year-old girl, at a Lake View Terrace crack house in 1988.

August 07, 1991|JIM HERRON ZAMORA | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Ending a three-year hunt, police and federal agents Tuesday arrested one of the FBI's 10 most wanted criminals, sought on suspicion of the execution-style slayings at a Lake View Terrace crack house of four people, including a 2-year-old girl.

Jon Preston Settle, 31, was arrested near an apartment in the 2800 block of Leeward Avenue in the Koreatown section of Los Angeles, said San Fernando Police Lt. Rico Castro.

Settle had been a fugitive since the Aug. 28, 1988, slayings of Andre Armstrong and James Brown, both of Pacoima; Lorretha Anderson of Seaside and her daughter, Chemise English, 2.

Anderson's 18-month-old son, Carlos English, was wounded.

Settle and 11 others were charged in the incident in the 11400 block of Wheeler Street near Fenton Avenue.

Settle, the only suspect who evaded arrest, was the subject of a segment on the television show "America's Most Wanted," Castro said.

Settle, who was being held without bail, was scheduled to be arraigned today in San Fernando Municipal Court on four counts of murder, one count of attempted murder and one narcotics charge, Castro said.

Officers staking out his apartment arrested him just after he left the building with his wife and a small child, said San Fernando Police Lt. Ernie Halcon, assistant commander of a San Fernando Valley drug task force that also involves the FBI, Los Angeles police and the Drug Enforcement Administration.

After his car was boxed in by police at 4th and Coronado streets, Settle surrendered peacefully, Halcon said.

Investigators have said Settle was part of a drug ring that dominated cocaine sales in Pacoima for a decade and oversaw up to six crack houses.

The drug operation also had ties to a statewide criminal group called the Black Guerrilla Family, formed in California prisons in the 1970s, investigators said.

Armstrong and Brown were lured to a rock house run by the ring, where Settle was believed to be one of several gunmen who shot them because of a dispute within the organization, Halcon said.

"One of the shooters then ran outside to the car. The men came in and shot a 30-year-old woman to death, and shot her 24-month-old daughter to death," said Halcon, who would not say whether Settle was suspected of also shooting the woman and the children.

The suspects removed the bodies of the two men from the house and dumped them in a remote canyon, police said.

The corpses were found by a California Highway Patrol officer several days later.

A car containing the dead woman, her slain daughter and seriously wounded son was found abandoned in an alley.

"I will never understand why this happened," Halcon said. "I don't see why they had to kill a 2-year-old."

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