HUNTINGTON BEACH : Arrest Is Made in Fatal Shooting

Police on Monday arrested a 39-year-old man suspected of stabbing and shooting his brother-in-law to death after an argument over who should pay what portion of the family's grocery bill, relatives and authorities said.

Robert Kozy of Huntington Beach was arrested without incident at 1:40 p.m. at his parents' house in Riverside, Sgt. Dan Johnson said.

Police had been searching for Kozy since Saturday in connection with the death of Rodney McAvoy.

The 49-year-old disabled Vietnam veteran had been stabbed numerous times and shot once in the chest, Johnson said.

Harry Anthony Bessa, McAvoy's 23-year-old nephew, said the gun used in the shooting belonged to McAvoy.

"I was in the living room talking to my uncle about the '60s," Bessa said. "I was sitting on the couch and the TV was on. All of a sudden, (Kozy) just ran through the door."

After thrusting a 14-inch knife at the disabled veteran, the assailant took a gun that McAvoy kept underneath the couch for protection and shot McAvoy, Johnson said.

McAvoy died at Huntington Beach Medical Center.

Bessa said: "I will have to relive that day over and over again for the rest of my life. Nobody should have to do that."

Kozy fled the apartment complex in the 7600 block of Ellis Avenue and apparently headed to his parents' house, where he was arrested by Riverside police and held without bail, Johnson said.

Bessa said Kozy married Bessa's mother, Arlene Kozy, about six years ago after the two met in a liquor store.

The 23-year-old Golden West College student obtained a restraining order against Kozy in 1993 after numerous threats of violence, according to Bessa and police.

"I felt like I was going to a prison every time I came home," Bessa said. "I had to barricade my bedroom door so he couldn't get to me."

Johnson said the restraining order was in effect at the time of the killing and was good until 1997.

Since 1992, Huntington Beach police have responded to 15 domestic trouble calls from the four-unit apartment complex where Kozy lived upstairs from McAvoy.

Police said Kozy has an arrest record, but details were not available Monday.

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