Man Sentenced to Life in Prison for Fatally Strangling a Vitamin Shop Clerk in Huntington Park

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The body of store clerk Veronica Hurtado Reyes was removed from the Huntington Park store where she was strangled to death during a robber on On March 15, 2012. (Credit: KTLA)

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A 54-year-old man was sentenced to life in prison without parole Monday for fatally strangling a vitamin store clerk during a robbery at in Huntington Park.

Arturo Bejarano Jr. was also sentenced to an additional 200 years to life after jurors found him guilty in a number of additional robberies, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced in a news release.

Bejarano was convicted last October of eight counts, including two counts of second-degree robbery; two counts of assault with a firearm; and one count each of first-degree murder and false imprisonment by violence, the release stated.

On March 15, 2012, Berjarano entered a vitamin store on East Florence Avenue where he bound and gagged store clerk Veronica Hurtado Reyes, before he robbed the business, according to a news release from the DA’s office in 2012.

Reyes, 39, ultimately died from strangulation, according to Deputy DA Steven Schreiner.

Two weeks before the fatal robbery, Berjarano held up a book store during which he bound and assaulted the store employee, according to the release.

More than three weeks after the vitamin shop murder, Bejarano committed another robbery at a home where a 16-year-old girl was present. She was able to hide in a closet, Schreiner stated.

Police used DNA collected from the crime scenes to link Bejarano to all three robberies, according to the DA’s office.

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