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Two Held Without Bail in Lancaster Slaying


LANCASTER — Two people--including a transient man--were arrested in connection with a fatal shooting in Lancaster last week, authorities said Saturday.

Thaddeus Montgomery, 34, and Betty Kirkham, 38, of Rosamond, were arrested Friday at a Pinon Hills residence based on information deputies gathered through the week, said Deputy Bob Killeen of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.

Montgomery and Kirkham were being held without bail at the Lancaster sheriff's station on suspicion of murder.

Derrick Mitchell, 23, was shot at about 1 a.m. July 6 at a residence in the 44500 block of Beech Avenue in Lancaster, according to authorities. He was taken to the Antelope Valley Hospital Medical Center where he died the next day at about 10:30 a.m.

According to authorities, sometime before the shooting Mitchell's brother had been arguing with two men and two women near the house where the killing occurred.

Later, Mitchell met with the four inside the residence to try to settle the dispute, Killeen said. During that argument, one of the four people pulled a gun and shot Mitchell.

At the Pinon Hills home where Montgomery and Kirkham were arrested, deputies found the .38-caliber revolver they believe was used in the shooting, Henry Garza of the Sheriff's Department said. Pinon Hills is a community southwest of Victorville in San Bernardino County.

Other information about the shooting was not available Saturday, authorities said.

The shooting remained under investigation.

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