Four Convicted In North Hollywood Shooting
Four people have been convicted in connection to a 2009 shooting in North Hollywood, the L.A. Times reports. Jurors deliberated for two days before finding two 25-year-old men, Zareh Manjikian and Vahagn Jurian, guilty of first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder Friday.
Two other defendants, 20-year-old Hovik Dzhuryan and his sister 23-year-old Khatun Vardanian, were convicted of conspiracy for their roles in the murder.
The four were connected to the November 18, 2009 shooting of 19-year-old Gombert “Mike” Yepremyan. Prosecutors said the four plotted to kill Yepremyan after he insulted Vardanian by calling her a bitch in a text to his girlfriend. Vardanian saw the text and called her brother Dzhuryan to beat Yepremyan up.
The 19-year-old began receiving phone calls from Dzhuryan, Jurian and others asking him to come to a Sears parking lot in North Hollywood. Yepremyan went to the lot with two friends and was accosted by Manijikian and Jurian.
Prosecutors say Jurian struck Yepremyan and Manijikian shot him in the back of the head with a 9mm. Manijikian then fled the country before surrendering to police after an international manhunt. Jurian was also a fugitive until he was arrested in early 2011. The two were being held on $8 million and $4 million bail. Bail for Vardanian and Dzhuryan was set at $30,000 and $45,000 respectively. All four were indicted in September by an L.A. County grand jury.
Zareh Manjikian faces a sentence of 50 years to life in prison, and Vahagn Jurian faces 26 years to life. Hovik Dzhuryan and Khatun Vardanian face five-year prison terms. A sentencing hearing will be held August 29.