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Family to offer $100,000 reward in unsolved Koreatown murder case

April 06, 2013|By Ruben Vives | This post has been corrected. See note below for details.
  • Samuel Michel, 25, was killed in his apartment in Koreatown on April 10, 2012.
Samuel Michel, 25, was killed in his apartment in Koreatown on April 10,… (Michel Family )

In the early hours of April 10, 2012, police found Samuel Michel dead inside his Koreatown apartment with a knife in his back and stab wounds to his head.

Despite a $50,000 reward, Los Angeles police homicide detectives have been unable to identify a suspect in the murder case.

As the anniversary of Michel’s death approaches, family and friends plan to hold a memorial celebration at his former apartment. They also plan to announce the increase of the $50,000 reward to $100,000 in hopes of generating leads.

“It’s been one year and it’s time to bring renewed awareness to the fact this case is still unsolved, and push to get someone, anyone to come forward with information,” said Bob Harris, a family friend.

Next week’s event will be held between 3 and 7 p.m. Family and friends will gather in the courtyard of the apartment complex. There will also be a food truck and music.

Relatives say Michel, an aspiring photographer, moved from South Salem, N.Y., to Los Angeles eight months before his death.

“It’s where he wanted to be to pursue his artistic vision,” said his mother, Deborah Michel. “Sam believed that Los Angeles is where artists get started.”

Authorities say on the eve of his death,  Michel had been drinking with a friend at the R-Bar on Irolo and 8th streets in Koreatown.

Police said he left the bar around 12:45 a.m. and walked five blocks back to his apartment, in the 800 block of Serrano Street. At around 2:40 a.m. April 10, neighbors at the complex reported hearing loud screams and called police.

Police later found him neither conscious nor breathing in his fifth-floor apartment. He was pronounced dead at the scene by Los Angeles firefighters.

Police said neighbors reported seeing a man riding away from the apartment on a BMX bike but he was never identified.

Anyone with information about the incident can call Los Angeles Police. Det. R. Rodriguez at (213) 382-9470. 

[For the record, April 6, 11:05 a.m.: The original post incorrectly attributed the first quote to the victim's mother, Deborah Michel. Bob Harris, a family friend, made that statement.]


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