Homeless man begging for food, money stabbed to death in Van Nuys

VAN NUYS, LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- A man was stabbed to death in the middle of the street in Van Nuys early Tuesday morning. His killer remains at large.

Police believe the man was likely a transient who was approaching cars and begging for food or money.

The victim, who was described as a man in his mid-to-late-30s, was attacked shortly after 1 a.m. near Woodley Avenue and Vanowen Street. After he was stabbed, authorities said he made it to the sidewalk in front of a liquor store, where some people came to his aid and called 911.

The man was transported to an area hospital, where he later died.

Police believe the victim was likely stabbed by someone in a car, but investigators did not have a description of a suspect or a vehicle. A weapon was not recovered.

Investigators do not believe the victim was threatening or dangerous in any way and was likely just begging.

"It is sad. I mean, there's an inherent danger in doing that aside from being struck by cars on the street," said Capt. Paul Vernon with the Los Angeles Police Department. "You don't know who you're approaching when you do, and that's kind of partly the risk of living out on the street as well."

According to police, the victim had earlier approached a police vehicle, wanting to shake an officer's hand. That officer advised the man not to walk into the middle of the street and to stay on the sidewalk.

Police planned to inspect surveillance video from area businesses and are also asking for the public's help in this case. If you have any relevant information, you're urged to contact the LAPD.
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