Co-worker arrested in Cal State Fullerton fatal stabbing, police say
A Cal State Fullerton employee has been arrested in connection with the fatal stabbing of a retired university administrator, authorities said Thursday.
Chuyen Vo, 51, was taken into custody at 10:16 p.m. Wednesday in his Huntington Beach home and is being held without bail, Fullerton police said at a news conference. Officials say he attacked Steven Shek Keung Chan, 57, in a campus parking lot Monday, killing the former budget director who had returned to Cal State Fullerton as a consultant.
Fullerton police Lt. Jon Radus did not disclose the relationship between Vo and Chan but said the victim had been targeted.
Chan was stabbed multiple times inside his car, which was parked in a campus lot. He was bleeding from his head and paramedics performed lifesaving measures, but he died at the scene.
“I come today to you with a heavy heart,” university President Framroze Virjee said at the news conference Thursday. “We as a Titan family have suffered a devastating tragedy that’s hit close to home. Our hearts are with Steven Chan and with his family and everyone in the campus community.”
Although Radus declined to say how investigators identified Vo as a suspect, he said items in the backpack played a role.
The assailant was last seen Monday running near Langsdorf Drive and Nutwood Avenue from the parking lot toward a nearby Marriott Hotel. He had been described as being in his mid-20s and was wearing all black.
The search for the attacker extended into Tuesday. Authorities combed the area with the help of Orange County Sheriff’s Department bloodhounds, but could not locate the suspect.
Investigators released a sketch and surveillance video in hopes that someone could identify the man who was seen running away from the crime scene. Police think he fled in a black four-door BMW sedan with black wheels and dark tinted windows that was parked in a nearby lot east of the 57 Freeway.
Monday’s attack, on the first day of the academic year, frightened the campus community and students, who are slated to start classes next week.
Chan served as Cal State Fullerton’s director of budget and finance and student services for university extended education from 2009 until he retired in 2017. He returned to the campus in early 2019 to work as a special consultant.
He was a private man who mostly kept to himself and was methodical in his work, said Ellen Treanor, a campus spokeswoman. He had an undergraduate degree in accounting from Cal State Hayward and a law degree from Whittier Law School.
“He was a man of few words,” Treanor said. “He refused to have a going-away party but hugged everybody when he came back.”
Times staff writer Hannah Fry contributed to this report.
Start your day right
Sign up for Essential California for news, features and recommendations from the L.A. Times and beyond in your inbox six days a week.
You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.