A Canadian man faces a murder charge with the potential to send him to death row after allegedly stabbing his brother-in-law to death following a family bowling night in El Monte earlier this week.
Loi Vi Tran, 40, of Calgary, Alberta is charged with murder, along with the special circumstance of lying in wait, making him potentially eligible for the death penalty, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office said in a written statement.
The deadly stabbing took place Saturday in the parking lot outside a bowling alley in the 10500 block of Lower Azusa Road, just west of El Monte Avenue, prosecutors and Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department investigators said.
Loi Tran was visiting from Canada and went bowling with extended family, according to the D.A.’s office statement.
“After the group played for several hours that night, the defendant paid for everyone’s games and went outside to wait for them,” the statement said.
“At that point, shortly after (noon), Tran is accused of stabbing his brother-in-law Stephen Tran, 45, of El Monte several times in the chest after an exchange of words,” the statement continued.
El Monte Police Department officers found and arrested the suspect at the scene. The knife believed to have been used in the stabbing was recovered.
Paramedics took Stephen Tran to a hospital, sheriff’s officials said. He soon died from his injuries.
The two men had been involved in an “ongoing family dispute,” Deputy Kimberly Alexander of the Sheriff’s Information Bureau said.
Loi Tran entered no plea during an appearance Tuesday in the Pomona branch of Los Angeles County Superior Court, court officials said. His arraignment hearing was postponed to Oct. 17.
He’s being held without bail, Los Angeles County booking records show.
Prosecutors have not yet decided whether they will seek capital punishment in the case.