Suspect Reports for Work : Fired Employee Held in Slaying of His Boss

Times Staff Writer

A fired chemical technician sought in the fatal stabbing last week of a Tustin chemical company employee was arrested early Monday, apparently after reporting for work, police said.

Ivory Joe Valentine, 31, was arrested without incident shortly after 7 a.m. Monday at Dynachem Corp., 2631 Michelle Drive, the scene of Friday’s incident, said Tustin Police Detective Mark Bergquist.

Valentine was charged with the murder of a plant supervisor, Ronald R. Gorby, 52, of Tustin. He also was charged with the attempted murder of John R. Wolcott, 60, also a plant supervisor.


Knife Used in Attack

Bergquist said Valentine, who had been an employee at Dynachem Corp. about five years, allegedly had “just been terminated” from his job Friday when he attacked Gorby and Wolcott with a knife.

Sgt. Paul Wright said “an argument took place” between Valentine and the victims when Valentine heard the news. Valentine eventually grabbed a knife and attacked both men, he said.

Valentine apparently was reporting to work Monday at his “normal starting time” when he was arrested, Bergquist said. Security personnel at the plant notified police at 7:04 a.m. that Valentine had parked his car at the rear of the building.

Bergquist said Valentine was inside the building when police arrived. “There’s no indication that he came back to harm anyone . . . . He was simply standing inside the building” in the hallway, Bergquist said. No weapon was found on Valentine at the time of his arrest.

Wright said police were in the process of obtaining a search warrant Monday for Valentine’s car to look for the murder weapon. Valentine was being held at Orange County Jail on $500,000 bond.

Bergquist said Wolcott, listed in stable condition with stab wounds to the face and neck, was transferred Monday from Western Medical Center in Santa Ana to an unidentified hospital at the family’s request. “They (family members) are expressing extreme concern that it’s public knowledge where (Wolcott had been),” he said.