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2 Held in Death of 1 Suspect’s Roommate

Los Angeles police have arrested a 38-year-old Van Nuys woman and a 32-year-old man in connection with the April 28 slaying of the woman’s roommate, authorities said Saturday.

Maureen L. McDermott and James Flores Luna were arrested Thursday in the stabbing death of Stephen Eldridge, 27. Both suspects are being held in Van Nuys Jail without bail, said Detective Mel Arnold.

Police initially thought Eldridge’s death occurred during a residential robbery. McDermott told police that three men broke into the Van Nuys home she shared with Eldridge, a self-employed landscaper. She said the men beat her unconscious and stabbed Eldridge to death.

But police found inconsistencies in McDermott’s account of the killing, and later uncovered evidence connecting the two suspects to the murder, Arnold said. He refused to disclose the nature of the evidence.

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Arnold said the killing was prompted by a dispute between Eldridge and McDermott.

The case against McDermott and Luna will be presented to the district attorney’s office Monday, Arnold said.


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