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Lake Forest stabbing suspect charged with murder

An early morning fight at an all-hours Orange County restaurant ended with a man being stabbed to death Saturday, June 11.

June 15, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
A suspect wanted in a fatal Lake Forest stabbing surrendered to authorities Monday.

Lake Forest resident Justin Tombleson, 28, is charged with one felony count of murder and a felony count of attempted murder, both with sentencing enhancements. Tombleson has a prior strike conviction for assault causing great bodily injury in 2005, according to the Orange County District Attorney's Office.

Elvis Kechechian, 26, was fatally stabbed in an altercation outside a Lake Forest restaurant Saturday at about 2 a.m. Kechechian's friend Hossein Saidoian, 32, was also stabbed. Saidoian was hospitalized in critical condition. Kechechian's brother and another friend, who were not named, were also with the pair.

According to the Orange County Sheriff's Department, two groups of people got into a dispute waiting in line at Albatros Mexican Restaurant on Rockfield Blvd. A witness described the two victims as intoxicated. A fight ensued. The restaurant's owner kicked the unruly people out of the establishment.

The fight escalated in the parking lot, leading to the two stabbings.

According to witness accounts and the OCDA, the two victims and another friend were arguing with two women, and allegedly spit on one of them in the restaurant. One of the females called her boyfriend, Tombleson, who arrived and allegedly stabbed the two men.

Kechechian was stabbed once in the heart. He was pronounced dead at a hospital. Saidoian was stabbed in the chest and the arm. Another man was severely beaten.

Sheriff's deputies interviewed more than 60 people at the scene.

Kechechian was a personal trainer as well as a strength and conditioning coach for the boys hockey team at Santa Margarita Catholic High School.

Tombleson faces 15 years to life in state prison if convicted, according to the OCDA's office. Tombleson was held on $1 million bail and was arraigned Wednesday.

Anyone with additional information is encouraged to contact Supervising District Attorney Investigator Randy Litwin at (714) 347-8492 or the OCSD Homicide Bureau at (714) 647-7055.

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