MAN CONVICTED IN EXECUTION-STYLE SLAYING OF GARMENT CONTRACTOR\AT GLENDALE FACTORY.
A Los Angeles jury Tuesday convicted an Armenian immigrant for the execution-style killing two years ago of a sewing contractor gunned down outside his Glendale garment factory.
Karapet Demirdzhyan, 36, is scheduled to be sentenced March 8 for the Nov. 2, 1993 murder of Hakop "Jack" Antonyan, 39. The businessman was slain outside GAHA Inc., on Garfield Avenue, where he and his brother manufactured Carole Little garments.
Demirdzhyan faces a 25 years-to-life sentence for the first-degree murder conviction, plus an additional five-year penalty on allegations of using a firearm.
Defense attorney James Sussman said he will appeal the conviction and ask Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Jacqueline Conner for a new trial.
He said his client was "disappointed, obviously," by the verdict.
Demirdzhyan didn't testify in his own defense, or provide an alibi for the time of the murder, Sussman said.
The case started Feb. 1, and the jury heard about a week's worth of testimony. The panel reached its guilty verdict after deliberating about three hours, said Deputy District Attorney Ellen Aragon.
The jury was convinced by "significant circumstantial evidence" against Demirdzhyan, Aragon said.
"There was a positive gunshot residue test performed on his hands after his arrest," Aragon said.
Further, the victim's brother and business partner, Garnik "Gary" Antonyan, witnessed the killing and identified Demirdzhyan in a jail lineup two months after the murder, Aragon said.
Glendale police also linked Demirdzhyan to the killing after finding the car believed used in the drive-by shooting near the murder scene. The car contained two 9 mm shell casings that matched the bullets that killed Antonyan, the prosecutor said.
GAHA Inc. is one of the Carole Little firm's biggest subcontractors. The designer ships its fabric, already cut into patterns, and GAHA workers sew up the seams, add zippers and buttons and finish the garments, even adding the price tags.