Police: 'Death warrants' near stab victims

July 19, 2012 at 7:05 PM
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LOS ANGELES, July 19 (UPI) -- Police say signed "death warrants" were left near at least three homeless people who were stabbed as they slept in Los Angeles and Santa Monica, Calif.

Citing law enforcement sources, the Los Angeles Times reported Thursday the victims -- described as two men and a woman in their 50s -- survived the assaults.

Police said a typed "death warrant" was left near the scene where a 56-year-old man was stabbed July 4 with what was described as a "hunting-type" knife. There was no word on the note's contents.

A second homeless man was stabbed Tuesday as he slept on a bus bench in Santa Monica, and police confirmed a similar note was found nearby, the newspaper said.

The third such incident occurred Thursday, when a 54-year-old woman was stabbed as she slept at an intersection in Hollywood. Police said a kitchen knife was found in her back and a "death warrant" was found nearby.

Police said they were looking for a suspect -- identified as David Ben Keyes -- and said he had been missing for weeks from the Santa Barbara area.

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