California Nightclub Death: Two Suspects Nabbed, Third Sought
A second suspect was arrested Friday in the California nightclub death of Santa Ana, Calif. resident Annie “Kim” Pham. Pham died as a result of blunt force trauma, the result of being beaten and kicked outside of The Crosby, a popular Orange County nightclub. A crowd stood watching the fight that ended in Pham’s death. Some videoed the altercation with their cell phones.
Witnesses have suggested that the altercation started when Pham walked in front of a group of people taking a photo. One witness, identified only as “Jason,” told the New York Daily News that Pham threw the first punch. Jason, who claimed that he was not involved, but was waiting in line to get into The Crosby, said that Pham was knocked out with one kick and that the fighters fled the scene after seeing that Pham was unconscious.
Since the fatal fight, police have arrested two suspects and are looking for a third. They are also interested in speaking with two males who were at the scene. Police initially believed the men had been involved in the altercation, but now believe that only women were involved in the actual fighting.
Santa Ana police arrested Vanesa Zavala, 25, of Santa Ana on Monday. Zavala, who has pleaded not guilty to a murder charge, is being held on $1 million bail. She faces up to 15 years in a California state prison if convicted. Zavala has a five year old son.
The name of the second suspect, who was arrested on Friday, has not been released. ABC News reports that Police Chief Carlos Rojas said only that the suspect was a 27 year old woman.
Rojas told KNBC-TV, “We are looking for the third person. She was involved in the physical altercation, and we are naming her as a person of interest at this point.”
Santa Ana and local businesses have pooled resources to offer a $10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of suspects involved in the California nightclub death.
According to the LA Times, state Senator Lou Correa (D-Santa Ana) called the attack “brutal and senseless” at a community meeting, adding:
“The fact that you had a lot of witnesses, that’s what’s really troublesome. How many people actually stepped in and tried to stop it?”
Pham, 23, was a resident of Westminster, Calif. and a recent graduate of Chapham University. She aspired to be a writer and hosted a talk show through Chapham University.
Witnesses or anyone with information about the California nightclub death of Annie Pham or the whereabouts of the persons of interest involved are encouraged to contact Orange County Crime Stoppers at 1-855-TIP-OCCS or the Santa Ana Police Department at 714-245-8390.