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Couple arrested, charged in death of man found stabbed on Tustin street

Tustin police have arrested a man and woman in the death of a man found stabbed in the street on Dec. 9.

The boyfriend-girlfriend duo, Miguel Orellana of Anaheim and Erika Pineda of Santa Ana, were arrested on Saturday after weeks of investigation led to them, police said.

At the time police didn’t know why 62-year-old David Nakaki had been attacked but now say the motive was robbery. Authorities would not say what was stolen.

On Tuesday, charges were filed in court against the pair. According to court records, Orellana, 19, was charged with felony murder with enhancements for using a deadly weapon and special circumstances of it also being a robbery. Pineda, 25, was charged with felony counts of conspiring to commit a crime and being an accessory after the fact.

It was shortly before 8:50 p.m. on the night of the crime when officers were called about a man in the street on Prospect Avenue at Norwood Park Place, Lt. Andy Birozy said.

When they arrived they found a bleeding Nakaki, of Tustin, with a single stab wound in his upper body. He was taken to a hospital but died shortly after, police said.

So began a search for a suspect in the stabbing of Nakaki who was walking on Prospect Avenue at the time. Investigators set up a dedicated tip line and asked the public for any information.

“We identified a vehicle of interest and we were able to find the car,” Birozy said adding that detectives were able to place the car at the scene. “That’s how (the suspects) were identified.”

Though Birozy would not give more details about how detectives found the pair, police said DNA evidence and witnesses statements were used to make the arrests in the “heinous and senseless crime.”

Court records show Orellana has previously faced charges for other crimes. In July 2019, he pleaded guilty to felony counts of stealing a car, possessing burglary tools and criminal street gang activity, among other charges. Two months earlier he also pleaded guilty possessing stolen burglary tools and buying or received stolen vehicle equipment.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call the dedicated tip line at 714-426-2400.


Source: Orange County Register

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