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Old 04-22-2011, 03:49 PM   #1
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Gangster’s tattoo leads to Murder Conviction

http://news.yahoo.com/s/yblog_theloo...his-conviction

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If Anthony Garcia wasn't regretting that huge tattoo inked across his chest before, he sure must be now. That's because it was the Los Angeles gangster's body art that tipped off law enforcement to his role in an unsolved murder--and ultimately helped lead to his conviction. In short, as Los Angeles Times reporter Robert Faturechi notes, Garcia drew cops a map of the crime scene--on himself.

In 2008, Kevin Lloyd, a homicide investigator with the L.A. County Sheriff's office, was looking through photos of tattoed gang members, when he came across Garcia's (above). Garcia had recently been picked up on a routine traffic stop and soon released, but the image on his chest caught Lloyd's attention.

Back in 2004, Lloyd had been working as a sergeant at the Pico Rivera station when he was called to the scene of a shooting outside a liquor store, in which 23-year-old John Juarez was gunned down. The murder was never solved.

But Lloyd quickly realized that the tattoo on Garcia's chest showed the scene. It wasn't just the image of the liquor store itself. It was the artistic details: the Christmas lights on the roof; the street lamp in the corner; and the murder victim depicted as a peanut, which is a gang terminology for a rival gang member. And above it all was a banner reading "Rivera Kills"—a reference to the Rivera-13 gang.

Lloyd and his colleagues soon found Garcia and arrested him. Then, a detective posing as another gang member was placed in Garcia's jail cell--and soon got him talking. Before long, Garcia was bragging about the liquor store shooting--unaware that the undercover detective was recording him.

That recording would later be played for a jury, which convicted Garcia of the murder.

It's not unusal for gang members to get tattoos that reference events in their lives--either symbolically or literally--as a way to impress their peers. But Homicide Lt. Dave Dolson said a tattoo that actually laid out its owner's involvement in an unsolved murder was something new.

"I haven't seen it before, and I haven't heard of anything like it either," Dolson told the paper.

Captain Mike Parker said cops had Garcia himself to thank for wrapping the case up. "Think about it," Parker said. "He tattooed his confession on his chest. You have a degree of fate with this."
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Old 04-22-2011, 03:55 PM   #2
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