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Murders Orange County

CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 16, 2001 | MONTE MORIN and JACK LEONARD, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
Attempts to win a conviction in Orange County's oldest cold case failed Wednesday when jurors deadlocked over whether Larry Donnell Paige murdered a Santa Ana man 25 years ago as the victim's stepson watched. The case, which relied on cutting-edge technology that sharpened blurry fingerprint images, is the oldest of dozens of unsolved murders that detectives now claim to have solved. In many of those cases, forensic advances have provided authorities with remarkable breakthroughs.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 14, 2001 | JACK LEONARD and MAI TRAN, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
During the four years that detectives searched for Newport Beach attorney Hugh "Randy" McDonald in connection with a murder case, another branch of government sent him checks totaling more than $20,000 that he used to live on. The Social Security Administration mailed the monthly disability checks to McDonald's San Fernando Valley bank for at least the last year, unaware that detectives wanted to question him as a possible suspect in the 1997 slaying of a businessman's wife.
NEWS
August 11, 2001 | JACK LEONARD and NANCY WRIDE and MAI TRAN, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
Hugh "Randy" McDonald seemed to have it all--a lucrative law practice, a loving family and a beautiful house near the ocean in Newport Beach--when he suddenly disappeared four years ago, just as police were about to question him as a suspect in a woman's death. Within days, they found his car, some clothes and a business card on the edge of the Golden Gate Bridge. He had mailed home a videotape as a "final farewell" to his wife and three children.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 10, 2001 | From Times Staff Writers
A Santa Ana man was convicted of first-degree murder Thursday in the slaying of his 14-year-old stepson, whose battered body was found half-buried in an Irvine drainage ditch. Francisco Muniz Gonzalez, 60, faces 25 years to life in prison when he is sentenced Sept. 14. The body of Mario Espinobarrios, a Santa Ana High School freshman, was found Jan. 29, 1999, in the creek bed with a rock on his head.
NEWS
August 7, 2001 | JACK LEONARD, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Witnesses have died or disappeared. Pieces of evidence are lost. Even the murder scene has been demolished. But the oldest "cold case" in Orange County history to result in murder charges went to trial Monday, with prosecutors arguing that they can prove who was behind the 1975 shooting of Larry Wheelock.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 7, 2001 | JACK LEONARD, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Witnesses have died or disappeared. Pieces of evidence have been lost. Even the murder scene has been demolished. But the oldest "cold case" in Orange County history to result in murder charges went to trial Monday, with prosecutors arguing that they can, in fact, prove who was behind the 1975 shooting of Larry Wheelock.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 1, 2001 | MATTHEW EBNET and MAI TRAN, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
The family of 17-year-old Kenneth Chiu, who was stabbed to death this week outside his Laguna Hills home, said they fear racism may have been behind the attack. Christopher and Minnie Chiu, Kenneth's parents, recalled numerous instances in the 10 years they have lived in the 27000 block of Woodbluff Road, a hilly neighborhood with mountain views. Several times, eggs were thrown at their house, said the Chius, both born in Taiwan. Once blue paint was splashed along the side.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 31, 2001 | MAI TRAN and DAVID HALDANE, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
A Laguna Hills teenager died early Monday after being stabbed several times in his driveway, and a 20-year-old neighbor was arrested shortly afterward, police said. Before he died at the hospital, Kenneth Chiu, 17, told police that his assailant was his next-door neighbor Christopher Charles Hearn, 20. Officers found Hearn on his own front porch. A large knife was recovered at the scene. Investigators questioned Hearn, who is deaf and cannot speak, through a sign language interpreter.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 31, 2001 | MAI TRAN and DAVID HALDANE, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
A Laguna Hills teenager died early Monday after being stabbed several times in his driveway, and a 20-year-old neighbor was arrested shortly afterward, police said. Before he died at the hospital, Kenneth Chiu, 17, told police that his assailant was his next-door neighbor, Christopher Charles Hearn, 20. Officers found Hearn on his own front porch. A large knife was recovered at the scene.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 26, 2001 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
The governor's office is offering a $50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the killer of a 20-year-old college student, stabbed to death in February 1994. Investigators are at a standstill and hope that the additional reward, which brings the total to $70,000, could help solve the murder of Cathy Torrez, said Placentia police spokeswoman Corinne Loomis. Torrez, a Cal State Fullerton student, was last seen Feb.
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