2 Long Beach men arrested in connection to fatal alleyway stabbing

Detectives yesterday arrested two men suspected of stabbing a man to death on Sunday, Jan. 2 in an alleyway in the East Village neighborhood near Downtown Long Beach, authorities said.

Long Beach resident Federico Chavez, 23, was booked on suspicion of one count of murder, one count of bringing drugs into jail, one count simple drug possession and one count of witness tampering, according to the Long Beach Police Department arrest log. Long Beach resident Diego Martinez, 29, was also arrested and booked on suspicion of one count of murder, according to the LBPD.

Police say homicide detectives gathered “significant evidence” linking Chavez and Martinez to the killing that occurred around 3:45 a.m. near the 700 block of Lime Avenue.

In a previous statement, police said a caller reported being “awoken by a male voice yelling for help, and as they looked towards the direction the voice was coming from, they could see two dark figures running away.”

Officers soon arrived at the alley and found a man in his 40s—who was conscious and breathing at the time—suffering from apparent stab wounds to his upper body, according to police.

Paramedics transported the wounded man to a local hospital, where he died from his injuries shortly after, according to police.

While the motive is still under investigation, detectives believe that everyone involved knew each other and that the stabbing was the result of an argument that escalated into a fight and, in turn, the fatal stabbing.

The Los Angeles County Medical Examiner-Coroner is still working on determining the identity of the man who was killed. Authorities said the man may have been homeless and living in the area.

Martinez and Chavez are both being held in Long Beach City Jail on $2 million bail. Detectives are expected to present their case to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office for filing consideration early next week.

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Fernando Haro is the Long Beach Post's breaking news and public safety reporter.