SANTA ANA, Calif. — A second woman was arrested Friday in the killing a woman who was beaten to death outside of an Orange County nightclub.
Police Chief Carlos Rojas said a 27-year-old Santa Ana resident was arrested for investigation of murder in the weekend attack that left Annie “Kim” Pham unconscious on the sidewalk. He didn’t release her name.
Pham, 23, of Westminster, was removed from life support Tuesday. Coroner’s officials said she died from head injuries.
Another Santa Ana resident, Vanesa Zavala, 25, pleaded not guilty to murder Wednesday.
Rojas said at a news conference that investigators believe Zavala and four other people were leaving The Crosby nightclub shortly before 12:30 a.m. Saturday when they “crossed paths” with a group that included Pham. A fight occurred.
Investigators were unclear how the confrontation started, “who said what, or who was fighting,” but they believe Zavala and two other women fought with Pham.
Police don’t know the identity of the third woman but she is considered a “person of interest” and investigators would like to talk to her, the chief said.
Police initially thought two men also may have been involved in the beating, but Rojas said investigators now believe only the women were involved. He said police would still like to talk to the men, however.
Pham was Vietnamese-American and Zavala is Latino. Santa Ana Mayor Miguel Pulido said authorities have reached out to the Vietnamese community to reassure them that “this is an isolated incident.”
“We don’t see this as a hate crime or anything of that nature,” he said.