Police: Robbery probably not motive in couple's killing

Police detectives said robbery does not appear to be a motive in the slaying of a young Irvine couple who were found shot to death late Sunday in a parked car at the upscale condominium complex where they lived.

“They could tell by physical evidence,” Irvine police Lt. Julia Engen said. “The car wasn’t rummaged through.”

Engen said there is no clear motive in the deaths of Monica Quan, 28, and her boyfriend, Keith Lawrence, 27. The two were engaged to be married, according to reports.

Engen said the crime involved “multiple gunshots” but would not be more specific. She said it does not appear to be a murder-suicide case, though that has not been ruled out as a possibility.

Quan and Lawrence both graduated from Irvine's Concordia University, where both played basketball.

Quan, a star basketball player in high school in Walnut, was the assistant basketball coach at Cal State Fullerton.

"I'm sorry we're gathered here today for news like this," Fullerton head women's basketball coach Marcia Foster said at a campus news conference. "There just aren't words."

Foster described Quan as a special person who was "bright, passionate and empowering. 

Quan's father, Randal Quan, was the first Chinese American captain in the Los Angeles Police Department and later served as the police chief at Cal Poly Pomona.

Lawrence was a public safety officer at University of Southern California, department officials said. 

Lawrence, a graduate of the Ventura County Sheriff’s Academy, joined USC’s Department of Public Safety in August 2012, according to a department statement by Chief and Executive Director John Thomas.

Thomas said that Lawrence was an “honorable, compassionate and professional” part of the department and the “Trojan family.”

“We are a better department and the USC Campus Community is a safer place as a result of his service,” Thomas said.

An earlier version of this story incorrectly attributed a statement to Quan's brother Ryan.

Thomas called the slayings a “senseless act of violence.”

This story was reported by John Canalis, Lauren Williams and Times Staff Writers Nicole Santa Cruz and Kate Mather.


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