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Twin Brothers Charged With Capital Murder in Fatal Stabbing of Woman: DA

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Booking photos of 18-year-old twin brothers, Keishon and Kenyata Blake. (Credit: LAPD)

Twin brothers were charged with capital murder Wednesday in the fatal stabbing of a 62-year-old woman who was robbed while walking home from the grocery store in South Los Angeles just days before Christmas.

Kenyata and Keishon Blake, 18, were each charged with one count of murder and two counts of second-degree robbery, according to a news release from the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.

The criminal complaint included a special circumstance allegation of a robbery during the commission of a murder, the release stated. Prosecutors said they would decide later whether to seek the death penalty in the case.

Store surveillance video showed Maria Elena Rivas checking out with her groceries on Dec. 22, 2014.

Store surveillance video showed Maria Elena Rivas checking out with her groceries on Dec. 22, 2014.

The crime occurred on Dec. 22, 2014, as Maria Elena Rivas was walking home from a supermarket in the Adams-Normandie area after finishing the last of her grocery shopping for Christmas, according to the DA’s office.

Rivas was fatally stabbed during the attack and her handbag was stolen, according to police.

Police announced the arrests on Wednesday, calling the brothers “cowards.”

“Having these two thugs off the street right now, people should feel a lot safer,” said Det. Sal LaBarbera with the Los Angeles Police Department’s Criminal Gang/Homicide Division.

The brothers were also accused in a similar robbery of a woman on Jan. 23 outside a liquor store in the Mid-City area, according to the complaint.

Detectives believed the brothers may have been involved in additional crimes.

Anyone with information about the pair was urged to contact police.