Three Arizona men were booked Monday on suspicion of killing an Irvine man in Garden Grove in what authorities called a marijuana deal gone bad.
Victor Rene Larios, 29, Jacob Alexander Ruiz, 24, and his cousin, Joseph Anthony Ruiz, 27, were booked on suspicion of fatally shooting of 32-year-old Thien Hoang Phan of Irvine.
The shooting occurred about 12:45 p.m. Sunday in the 9600 block of Westminster Avenue, said Garden Grove police Lt. Carl Whitney. A partner of Phan’s who was at the drug deal managed to get away without getting injured and later called police, Whitney said.
Police arrested the three suspects about 1:30 a.m. Monday as they left a hotel in Venice Beach, Whitney said.
The trio had done business with Phan in the past, Whitney said. But during this most recent alleged transaction a dispute over money and the product erupted, triggering the shooting, Whitney said.
It was the third drug-related killing this year in Garden Grove as some criminals come from states where marijuana is illegal to California where the recreational use of the drug is legal, Whitney said.
On April 29, a suspect attempted to rob a drug courier for cash at a stash house for marijuana sales in the 12000 block of Corvette Street, Whitney said. The courier claimed he gunned down 35-year-old Brandon Nicholas Ross in an act of self-defense, Whitney said.
On July 8, 25-year-old Shon Xavier Hall was killed in a home-invasion robbery in the 9100 block of La Grand Avenue, Whitney said. The suspects demanded cash and narcotics from the victim, Whitney said. No arrests have been made in that killing.
They were all being held on $1 million bail.