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Man Wanted in Slaying Arrested in Court Lobby

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Sheriff’s deputies seeking an arrest warrant for a murder suspect in a Newhall court on Thursday didn’t have to go far to find their man. He happened to be sitting in the lobby outside the courtroom.

Homicide detectives were in Newhall Municipal Court waiting for a judge to sign an arrest warrant for Thomas Warren, a 29-year-old transient wanted in connection with the shooting death of a man found in his car last month near Santa Clarita. A court clerk handed the paperwork to the detectives and pointed out that a man matching Warren’s description was sitting in the lobby, said Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Sgt. Vincent Callier.

They questioned the man, who turned out to be Warren, and arrested him on suspicion of murder, Callier said. It was not clear why Warren was waiting in the lobby. He was being held without bail Thursday night in the Santa Clarita sheriff’s station jail.

The body of John Gabriel Fitusi, 30, of Van Nuys was found riddled with bullets and slumped over the steering wheel of a rental car on the Antelope Valley Freeway north of Shadow Pines Boulevard on May 8.

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Also arrested in connection with the killing was Dennis Reese, 39, of Palmdale, Callier said. Reese was taken into custody Tuesday in West Hollywood. He was being held without bail late Thursday at the West Hollywood station jail.


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