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Driver of Cadillac limo runs over woman and drags body through skid row, police say

Sonia Tauanuu, 25, was pronounced dead by witnesses at the scene, the LAPD says. The driver, Nancy Lekon, 43, was arrested on suspicion of homicide.

December 04, 2009|By Robert J. Lopez

The driver of a Cadillac limousine intentionally ran over a woman and dragged her body nearly a mile through skid row in downtown Los Angeles early Thursday, authorities said.

Sonia Tauanuu, 25, was pronounced dead about 1 a.m. by witnesses at the scene, the Los Angeles Police Department said.

The incident, which police are investigating as a homicide, began shortly before 1 a.m. when two women began arguing in the 700 block of Ceres Avenue, the LAPD said.

The driver got into the vehicle, struck the woman and began driving northeast through skid row, according to the LAPD. The limousine, with the body wedged underneath, stopped near 5th and Los Angeles streets.

Police said they arrested the driver, Nancy Lekon, 43, on suspicion of homicide.

It was unclear what sparked the argument, police said.

As Newton Division homicide detectives conducted their preliminary investigation, authorities shut down parts of westbound 5th Street near Los Angeles Street, said Officer Christine Eastburn of the LAPD's Central Traffic Division.

robert.lopez@latimes.com

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